The big Dublin derby takes place in Tallaght tonight
Shamrock Rovers and Bohemians lock horns tonight as the first big Dublin derby of the season takes place at Tallaght Stadium.
The matches between the pair were fiery encounters last season with Rovers coming out on top, winning the first clash 4-0 at Dalymount Park and the second game 3-1 in Tallaght with Bohs saving some face winning the third match 1-0 back at Dalymount last October.
Rovers enjoyed a better 2016 season than their arch-rivals finishing in fourth spot and 14 points ahead of the north Dublin side.
Dundalk's Robbie Benson celebrates scoring against Rovers last week. Image: ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne
Both teams lost on the opening the day of the season; Rovers going down 2-1 at champions Dundalk with Bohemians suffering a 4-1 home defeat against Derry City.
Although both teams conceded roughly the same amount of goals last season, Bohs struggled in front of the target finishing with a minus seven total and this is an area they will need to improve on if they are to mount a challenge for the European spots this season.
Bohemian’s Paddy Kavanagh dejected after Derry win 4-1 at Dalymount. Image: ©INPHO/Tom Beary
Speaking to the club's official website ahead of the game, Bohs' boss Keith Long said: "The game has come early! It’s a big one for both clubs. Rovers have spent a lot of money assembling a squad that is expected to challenge, so there’s pressure there too.
“We’ve both started the season with a defeat. There’s pressure on both teams even though we’re only one game in."
Rovers' boss Stephan Bradley, again speaking to the club's official website said: "It doesn't matter what you say about both teams and where they are. Friday's a derby and derby games are always the same. You have to match them, you have to match the fight and their intensity."