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Stephen Bradley, Shamrock Rovers manager, during the SSE Airtricity League Premier Division’s recent loss to Dundalk at Oriel Park. Photo: Ben McShane / Sports File

Aidan Fitzmaurice

Shamrock Rovers, who has had this feeling of winning for such a long time, insists that losing doesn’t become a habit. Manager Stephen Bradley promises an immediate response to the end of his long, undefeated run.

The 2-1 loss to Dundalk on Friday ended a 33-game run of league games without a loss for Rovers. With St. Patrick’s Athletic beating Bohemians over the weekend, Rovers’ lead, which seemed unassailable a month ago, is now down to three points.

The Hoops will have their injured squad against three Sligo Rovers tonight go into battle in three straight wins without conceding (including a 3-0 win over Waterford).

“I know this group will answer. I know what they are, I know their characters, “says Bradley (below), delighted with how his side was portrayed in Dundalk.

” If we’re completely played out and lean against the wall, it’s another Mentality, but it couldn’t have been further from it. ” We are obviously disappointed because the run was incredible and the players deserve tremendous recognition.

“But we played really well and should have won the Dundalk game. Players will be disappointed, but we will forget about that. We’ll move on quickly after wins and we’ll do that after losses and prepare for a tough game. “

Injuries to key players like Ronan Finn and Chris McCann forced Rovers to grapple with a bank that had little experience, although Bradley is hoping to have a stronger squad for Sligo’s visit.

Daniel Kelly, who out Ringsend’s Rovers heartland was one of Dundalk’s key players in the win and, ahead of their trip against Bohemians, urged the FAI Cup holders to build on that. “For a man we were amazing and deserved the three points Obviously Rovers are the best team in the league right now, the table doesn’t lie, we just have to start closing the gap between the teams above us, “said Kelly, wary of his former club Bohs.

” As they came here against us, they played very well and they probably deserve to beat us, but they are a really good team with a lot of talent, lots of young guys who are really good, it’s never easy to play against To play bohs, as I know from playing with them. “

A missed penalty from Georgie Kelly was costly to Bohs at St. Pat, but midfielder Ross Tierney has confidence in the striker.

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“Georgie is a bit confident but the goals will come. I love playing with him as he is easy to play. He is a little bit low but we will pick him up when his goals come” said Tierney.

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