League Preview: Shamrock Rovers -v- Treaty United

Maria Reynolds in action for Shamrock Rovers in their 1-1 draw away to DLR Waves on 9 March

Maria Reynolds in action for Shamrock Rovers in their 1-1 draw away to DLR Waves on 9 March Credit: Matthew Lysaght (ETPhotos)


The Tallaght Tiki-Takas are eagerly anticipating the arrival of the women from Garryowen to Dublin 24 on Saturday, determined to net a result that befits another strong performance.

Following a frustrating 1-1 draw away to The Shannonsiders in their opening All-Island Cup clash, Hoops Head Coach Collie O’Neill spoke to his club’s media team about Rovers’ ardent desire to take another bite at the cherry this weekend.

“I think because we left a little bit disappointed that we didn’t get the win…it does feel like a little bit of unfinished business,” said O’Neill.

“I’m hoping that we’ll be able to start nice and, hungry, have that extra little bit of desire from the off and not be waiting to go one nil down before we get going. So I think the players should be up for it.

“In terms of Treaty, they were very good in the first half - they caused us a good few problems but we dominated the second half and it’s more frustration on our part that we didn’t convert a lot of the chances that we did create in that second half.”

Reflecting further on his squad’s tendency this season to cruise before upping the ante on conceding, O’Neill said: “Yeah, we’ve done that in each of our three games so far this season.

"I think the opposition scoring has woken us up a little bit. So I think if I start my team talk now on Saturday I’m going to tell them that they’re 1-0 down before the game starts and see if we can start from the first minute.”

When asked for his suppositions on the approach that the Limerick livelies may take on the Dublin 24 turf, O’Neill said: “We won’t get too bogged down on what their approach is going to be or what their game plan is.

“It’s just what our game plan is going to be and trying to look to see if we can add some improvement on top of last week, and if we do create those chances, can we finish those chances? But also there are other areas that we still need to improve in.

"I thought Treaty were very good. Their hunger, enthusiasm and intensity were all very good and they’re a really tough side to play against.”


Dominic Foley’s Canadian Cavalry will look to further ship and shine their record against The Hoops when they travel to Tallaght and attempt to further temper the Dublin 24 hit squad that put ten past their posts in 2023.

Holding the women in green and white to a draw at Garryowen was a noticeable improvement on last season’s one-sided contests against O’Neill’s debutants, something Foley alluded to in his post-match interview with Treaty TV.

“We set out at the start of the season [as I said to you before] to be better than we were at the start of last season. Going on recent previous results against Rovers, it’s a step in the right direction. We held on a little bit before the end so we were happy to get out of there really with a draw.”

Speaking on his side's tactical approach for their first face-off with Rovers in 2024, the Cork native highlighted the energy effort expended by his Garryowen Gladiators.

“I’ve watched the two previous games Rovers have played in and both teams have sat off them and let them have the ball but we said today we were going to go after them and push right up on them and stop them playing out

“But to do that it takes a lot of energy out of the girls so I was expecting in the second half that we would have to fall back a little bit and defend.”

Canadian trio Kayla Kyle, Talia White and Erin Van Dolder have made an instant impact under Foley's tutelage, the latter having scored two belters with both foot and head, with White earning the captain's armband for the remainder of the campaign.

Yet closer to home, Limerick native Grace McInerney has impressed this season, holding her own in a fierce battle at right back against Rovers dynamo, Joy Ralph, while Under 17s international skipper, Katie Lawlee, is sure to be a future contender for the captaincy, the vibrant youngster covering every blade of grass at The Markets Field.

On Van Dolder's form to date, Foley opined: “She’s been immense the last two games for us. She’ll win tackles she’ll win headers she’ll organise she’ll work hard and even has scored two goals as well.”

A clash of heads in last weekend's contest has left Van Dolder’s fitness in doubt. If unable to play a part on Saturday, this disruption will invariably benefit the home side.

On the approach to their second contest against The Hoops in under ten days, Foley said:

“We will do the same thing again. If you leave Shamrock Rovers play, they will play you off the field. So we’ll have to be in their faces.

“We’ll have to put our front foot forward…maybe just be a little bit better on the ball…keep it and move it faster to make them work a little bit harder than when we have the ball.”

Referee: Ian O’Keeffe


So determined are the visitors to exorcise the green and white ghosts that haunt Garryowen, Tallaght residents may be alarmed by the potential sighting of the Ghostbusters 1959 Cadillac Miller parked outside Tallaght Stadium. When the sides first encountered one another last season, the Hoops cruised to a comfortable 6-0 victory at Tallaght in the Spring, while a 4-1 drilling followed suit at Markets Field.

Yet the tenacious and threatening display by Dominic Foley's Treaty in the first half of their All-Island Cup clash will have earned the respect of Hoops Head Coach Collie O'Neill, who will undoubtedly field a strong starting eleven this Saturday in an effort to secure what have been an elusive three points.


Shamrock Rovers 3-1 Treaty United

Shamrock Rovers

Injured: Savannah McCarthy

Doubtful: Fiona Owens

Suspended: Jaime Thompson

Treaty United

Injured: Caleigh Boeckx, Fiana Bradley

Doubtful: Erin Van Dolder, Delana Friesen

Suspended: None