EA Sports Cup second round preview: Holders Drogheda United take on Longford Town

Mick Cooke's side host Longford at Hunky Dorys Park while Sligo Rovers play host to Mervue United in a Connacht derby at the Showgrounds
There are 14 teams in action as the second round of the EA Sports Cup gets underway this evening, Monday, May 20.

Holders Drogheda United will look to put their 3-2 home defeat to Derry City behind them as they host First Division side Longford Town at Hunk Dorys Park. Despite suffering a heavy defeat in the Setanta Sports Cup final against Shamrock Rovers and losing out to the Candystripes at home in the league, Drogheda boss Mick Cooke has, nevertheless, been pleased with his side's performances.

"Our last two performances since the Setanta Sports Cup final have been excellent," he said. "We have bounced back as I knew we were capable of doing and if we continue on in that vein [today], I would be confident of getting a result."

Elsewhere, FAI Cup holders Derry City travel to Finn Park to contest a North-West derby with Finn Harps. Peter Hutton's side are currently second in the First Division after defeating Mervue United on Friday evening, but the former Derry City captain is anticipating an "extremely tough" encounter.

"Monday's game will be an extremely tough game with [Derry City] flying high in the Premier Division and on the back of a great result away to Drogheda," said the Harps boss. "However the First Division itself is a very tough league and there are no easy games so we will continue to look forward to the next challenge and hope to give a good account of ourselves."

Airtricity Premier Division leaders Sligo Rovers will host a Connacht derby when they face Galway side Mervue United at the Showgrounds. The Bit o' Red had their Premier Division clash with Dundalk cancelled on Friday due to inclement weather and Ian Baraclough is hoping for a positive response from his players.

"[Mervue United] will come to Sligo feeling they have nothing to lose and it is up to us to go and win the tie," said Baraclough. "The players will be itching for a game after the cancelled fixture and we hope to see that in the performance."

Salthill Devon will take on Liam Buckley's St Patrick's Athletic at Drom and the Saints boss is keen to make his mark in the competition. "A win would only leave us a few games away from a final of a competition we've only won twice," he said. "So we'll be aiming to leave with our names in the draw for the next round." In Munster, Stuart Taylor's Limerick welcome Waterford United to Thomond Park following the resignation of manager Paul O'Brien.

Meanwhile, Bohemians will host Bray Wanderers at Dalymount Park in the only all-Premier Division tie of the round, while Cork City travel to Ferrycarrig Park to take on Wexford Youths.

EA Sports Cup Second Round
Limerick v Waterford United, Thomond Park, 19:45 BST
Wexford Youths v Cork City, Ferrycarrig Park,19:45 BST
Finn Harps v Derry City, Finn Park, 19:45 BST
Sligo Rovers v Mervue United, The Showgrounds, 19:45 BST
Bohemians v Bray Wanderers, Dalymount Park, 19:45 BST
Salthill Devon v St. Patrick's Athletic, Drom Soccer Park, 19:45 BST
Drogheda United v Longford Town, Hunky Dorys Park, 19:45 BST