Derry City ready to meet opponents ‘head on’ in final match before break says Doherty

The Candystripes will face Bohemians at Dalymount Park on Thursday night.

Derry City Ben Doherty has his goal effort saved by Sligo Rovers keeper Edward McGinty at the Brandywell on Friday night. Picture Margaret McLaughlin  24-5-2024
Derry City's Ben Doherty will be hoping for a strong performance ahead of the mid-season break Picture: Margaret McLaughlin (MARGARET MCLAUGHLIN PHOTOGRAPHY )

Defender Ben Doherty believes Derry City will be giving everything in what is their final game before the mid-season break at Bohemians tomorrow night.

The talented left-back admits preparation for their encounter at Dalymount Park has been spot-on and they’re expecting former City assistant manager Alan Reynolds to spring some sort of surprise on them.

“Look, it’s the last game before the break and I think it’s about going and emptying the tank, giving everything to try and get another three points,” he stated.

“It’s a tough venue that we go to and we know Rennie (Alan Reynolds) well and he’ll have something up his sleeve, but it’s up to us to meet that head on.

“Look, we’re looking forward to it, we have trained well and we’ve done all our usual preparation as we do for every game, so we’ll be ready to go on Thursday.

“We’ve played well in games this season and we’ve drawn or lost, but we’re on a good run and it’s just about us going now and putting in a performance, doing what we can do and the result should take care of itself after that.”

The Candystripes skipper Patrick McEleney, who is likely to be out for a number of months after his surgery on his fractured elbow, was with his team-mates before and after last Friday night’s win over Galway United and Doherty insists he’s still a big player in the changing room, despite not being out on the pitch.

“It’s probably testament to Patrick that he was in a cast the day after his injury against Waterford and he was with us. He had his surgery on Thursday and he was still in the changing room before the Galway game on Friday,” explained the ex-Larne man.

“He was with the boys before the Galway game, the day after his surgery and he was motivating people before the game and he was just as buzzing as everybody else in the changing room with the three points after the game and I think that sums him up.

“He’s looked up to by everyone in the dressing room and he’s highly respected and the message tonight (Friday) was to go out and do it for him.”

The 27-year-old knows that Derry’s attack minded players such as Michael Duffy, Will Patching, Pat Hoban, Paul McMullan, Daniel Kelly and Daniel Mullen always want to produce the goods.

“If you have those types of players, at that end of the pitch and you are providing them with the quality that they want, then they’re going to deliver,” he admitted.

“Those players want their numbers to be up, they want assists and goals. I think we’ve seen a new lease from Mickey over the past few weeks and I’m loving playing with him.

Alan Reynolds (left) insists the pre-season President's Cup match against Shamrock Rovers is one Derry will be going all out to win
Former Derry City assistant manager Alan Reynolds (left) in now the man in charge at Bohemians

“I’ve loved playing with him since I’ve came to the club, on the pitch me and him get on very well, our interchange is very good and that was one of the things we talked about at half-time in the Galway game, could me and him link up a wee bit more and lucky for us in the second half we did that.

“The message going into the Galway game was to back up the Waterford performance, I think we started very well against Waterford and we did that against Galway last Friday night, I think we got a free-kick in a dangerous area after just 20 or 30 seconds and that set the tone.

“We probably had a few big chances in the first half but we didn’t take them, but then going in at half-time we just remained calm and stuck to our game plan and I think we were more like ourselves in the second half, we were fluid and sharp and we got two quality goals that we work on and our patterns were very good in the second half.

“The message this week going into Thursday’s game at Bohs is very similar and hopefully we can produce another good performance and get another victory before the mid-season break.”