After hitting the 100th league goal of his career with a double against Finn Harps last weekend, Dundalk striker Patrick Hoban will be hoping to hit another landmark when he lines out against St Patrick’s Athletic at Oriel Park this Friday night (kick-off 8pm, live on eirSport).
While he reached the century after scoring 19 league goals for Mervue Utd and 81 for Dundalk, Hoban’s next goal for the Lilywhites will be his 100th for the club.
That’s a target he now looks destined to hit and the 28-year-old told The Argus he hopes it is against St Pat’s on Friday.
“Hopefully I’ll get that sooner rather than later,” he said.
“I know how it feels to go on a run not scoring goals. I’m happy enough with the second goal today because it was something that fell for me and just being in the right place at the right time. I didn’t get much of them last year so I’m quite happy with how things have started this season.”
Hoban said he was thrilled with his latest landmark as he became just the 44th player in the league’s history to hit 100 goals.
“Yeah, it’s great,” he said.
“When you start playing football they’re the kind of goals you want to reach. I’m buzzing to have hit 100 but hopefully there are a lot more to come.”
With five goals already this season, it is Hoban’s best ever start to a season in terms of goals scored and he puts that down to having a good pre-season under his belt.
“To be honest I feel great. I’m probably in the shape of my life as well.
“This off season has suited me very well. I wasn’t carrying any knocks from the previous seasons like I had been in other years and I think that has helped. I’ve been working hard in the off season to come back in the right shape and then I worked hard in pre season. Long may it continue now because I know how quick it can change. I just have to keep striving forward.”
Hoban was equally pleased with his side’s response to win 4-0 in Ballybofey after their defeat away to Shamrock Rovers the previous week.
“During the week we knew it was going to be a difficult game. The pitch is not great out there to be honest with you and we knew it was going to be a difficult night. We came here this time last year and they made it really difficult for us and we were lucky to come out with a draw. The way we started tonight, pressing from the front, was the main thing to do tonight and I thought we did it very well but scoring an early goal definitely helps.
“Like I said, this is not an easy place to come and their record shows that for itself. They’re very hard to play against and they make it difficult for you. The main thing tonight was to get the three points but the performance was a good one as well. I thought we moved the ball very well and it was a great response after the result last Friday.”
Hoban said his opener after just 140 seconds was a big moment in the game.
“I knew once it got laid to me that I had hit it very well. I know it got a bit of a deflection but I think it was on its way anyway to be honest with you. You need to come up here and start the game like that because Harps can make it very difficult for you.
“The pitch was brought in about a metre on the far side and that just makes things a lot harder for you but I thought we played a lot of decent stuff tonight considering the pitch.”
Hoban now expects another tough test against St Patrick’s Athletic this week.
“They don’t come easy. Pat’s try to play the right way as well so it’ll be another difficult task for us on Friday. We just need to prepare right, recover right and get ourselves right for Friday to kick on again.”