By Robert O’Reilly
Drogheda United will look to take a considerable step towards the playoffs when they host First Division leaders UCD at United Park on Friday, kick-off 7.45pm.
The Drogs return to league action this week after having their FAI Cup adventure ended by Waterford last Friday.
Bastien Héry’s early strike was all that separated the Premier and First Division sides with Clancy left disappointed for his players.
“I thought we were excellent,” the Trim native explained Thursday morning. “That’s the second time that we’ve really brought the game to a top Premier Division side and it’s a shame we’ve gone out of the Cup.
“We were just lacking that moment of quality in the final third. I don’t think Waterford will play much harder games between now and the end of the season.”
Drogheda’s sole focus in the weeks that remain will be on securing their place in the end of season promotion playoffs as they sit fourth with three games left to play.
With just a two point lead over Longford Town in fifth, and the Midlanders to visit United Park in a fortnight, Clancy is calling on his players to rise to the occasion and put on a performance tomorrow evening.
“It’s the kind of game that players relish, there’s so much resting on it for both sides.
“We’re one of only a handful of teams to beat UCD this season and we’ve only lost twice at home this year, we need to take confidence from this on Friday.
“UCD have been brilliant this season and fully deserve to be top but we know we have what it takes to get the right result.
“We’ve played our best football in the biggest games this season and we’ll need to do that again on Friday.”
Colm Deasy will miss out for Drogheda through suspension but there are no injury doubts.