Derry boss Ruaidhrí Higgins: We’ll carry confidence into Shamrock Rovers clash

Candystripes bouyed by injury-time win over St Pat’s as they take on champions in Tallaght

Derry City's Ben Doherty in action against St Pat's Athletic on Friday night
Picture: Margaret McLaughlin
Derry City's Ben Doherty in action against St Pat's Athletic on Friday night Picture: Margaret McLaughlin
SSE Airtricity Premier Division: Shamrock Rovers v Derry City (Monday, 7.45pm, live on Virgin Media Three)

Derry City boss Ruaidhrí Higgins feels tonight’s clash at champions Shamrock Rovers is a great game for his side.  

The match comes on the back of the Candystripes’ come-from-behind home win over St Patrick’s Athletic on Friday night and Higgins feels Daniel Mullen’s 92nd minute winner will give his squad a spring in their step.  

“It’s a great game for us, especially after the last minute winner on Friday night and hopefully we can carry that confidence into the game,” Higgins said.

“Obviously they’re going to be fresh as their game with Drogheda United was called off, but listen we’ve played Friday, Monday, Friday for a long time, so it’s nothing that the players aren’t used to and as I said hopefully the momentum gathered from Friday night will stand us in good stead going into it.”  

The Limavady man may have a selection headache for Monday evening’s clash at Tallaght Stadium as substitutes Paul McMullan and Mullen played a major role in their win over the Saints and will be hoping to force their way into the starting eleven.  

“The impact from our substitutes on Friday night was outstanding,” he explained.

“We’ll need that throughout the season regardless of who’s playing or who’s on the bench, we’re going to need everyone.”

With Friday night’s game against Drogheda United postponed, Stephen Bradley’s men face the Foylesiders looking to bounce back from their loss to Shelbourne, which was their last game.

However, in that contest at Tolka Park, the Hoops played some good football and because of that Higgins knows it’s going to be a tough test tonight.  

“They were excellent from probably 30 minutes on, in that game against Shels and I think we all know at this stage, the threat that Rovers pose and we’ll have to be prepared for that,” insisted the Derry gaffer.  

“They’ve plenty of talent, but so do we and I’m sure it will be an exciting game.”  

In their previous three matches, City have struggled in the first half and the 39-year-old admits he’s concerned by his side’s slow starts in games.  

“First half at Sligo we were a bit off it and the first half against St Pat’s we were really, really disappointing and we were fractured in and out of possession, but we didn’t give up and showed great resilience to come back and win,” explained Higgins.  

“Having a come from behind win it’s great for the group and great for the dressing room, especially two second half goals, one around the 90th minute, that always gives everyone a boost.”  

Elsewhere tonight in the Premier Division, joint-leaders Shelbourne entertain fellow in-form men Galway United; St Pat’s make the long trip South to face Waterford; Sligo Rovers will be looking to bounce back from their home loss to Shels, visit Dundalk and Declan Devine’s Bohemians travel to Drogheda United.

Tonight’s fixtures
SSE Airtricity Premier Division (7.45pm)

Drogheda Utd v Bohemians

Dundalk v Sligo Rovers

Shamrock Rovers v Derry City

Shelbourne v Galway Utd

Waterford v St Patrick’s Athletic