Date: 3 p.m. Nov. 7, 2020
Venue: Tallaght Stadium
2 - 0

Graham Burke 58' -
Scored: 58'

Aaron Greene 90' + 1' -
Scored: 90'

League Preview: Shamrock Rovers -v- Derry City

Fri, Nov 06 2020

None Credit: Peter Fitzpatrick


The newly crowned champions Shamrock Rovers have an unbeaten season on their mind when Derry City are the opposition in Saturday for the final home league game of the season in Tallaght Stadium (kick off 3pm). The Hoops are two games away from becoming the first side to avoid defeat in a league campaign since the 1926/27 season.

Rovers’ winning league run of six consecutive victories came to an end last Wednesday night with a 0-0 home draw with St. Patrick’s Athletic. It didn’t dampen the title winning celebrations though amongst the players and management after the match in Tallaght when Rovers received their winners medals before captain Ronan Finn lifted the trophy.

Reflecting on the title celebrations during the week, Hoops Head Coach Stephen Bradley said “it was a great night for everyone involved in the club, the players and staff because we’ve had to be patient as we won it a few weeks back. 

“There’s nothing like getting your hands on the trophy and getting your medal so it was a great evening. At the start of the year your aim is to try and win the league because it’s the main competition and when we go and achieve that it’s special because you know the work that’s gone into it. So you could see that with everyone’s celebrations and the joy on everyone’s face.”

It was their second scoreless draw of the season against St. Patrick’s Athletic in what was a tight game in Tallaght that could have gone either way. ““We were okay in patches and sloppy in other patches. That’s to be expected considering the layoff we’ve had. It’s our second game back (after a three game COVID-19 related postponement). 

“I think you always get away with the first game after a layoff because that bit of adrenaline usually gets you through it but it’s the second or third game that catches you and it looked like that one caught us. We weren’t our usual selves.

“I think it’s a different game if we’re playing regularly and we have our legs and games under our belt. The pleasing thing was that even though we weren’t at our best we didn’t concede, which was important.” 

The Hoops had to deal with the sending off of Joey O’Brien on 70 minutes - Rovers’ first red card in the league this year. “It’s obviously not ideal going down to ten men but we know how to deal with it, we’ve trained for it and they’re ready. They dealt with it really well and worked hard for each other and never panicked.”

Jack Byrne made a return to playing, after he got coronavirus, and was a 24th minute replacement for Graham Burke who picked up an ankle injury (but is expected to be available on Saturday).

“We didn’t want Jack to come on quite as early as that, we wanted to get him on at half-time but it’ll do him no harm because he hasn’t kicked a ball in five or six weeks. He got hit pretty hard with it (COVID-19). He was the worst out of our players that got Covid. He’s only back on his feet the last week really, he only trained a few sessions and only one of those was a full session. 


This is a twice re-arranged game for Derry City in Tallaght Stadium as the original fixture set for mid-October had to be postponed initially due to a positive COVID-19 case in the Rovers squad before Derry City couldn’t fulfil the re-arranged fixture due to a coronavirus case in their own camp.

This means both clubs will have to play Saturday and then Monday as all five Premier Division games are moved 24 hours from Sunday to Monday. The Candystripes league campaign will conclude then away to Cork City. 

That will bring to a close a season with half the number of matches as had been planned originally and has been extended three times - first following the long COVID break, secondly following Dundalk’s Europa League qualification along with coronavirus issues in the St. Patrick’s Athletic camp and finally the last set of games being moved to facilitate Saturday’s re-arranged game in Tallaght.

Declan Devine’s men come into these final two matches still needing a point to mathematically avoid an end of season relegation/promotion play-off against Longford Town. 

However, with it being just an 18 game season, the Candystripes also still have the chance to finish in the top four should they secure all six points on offer in the next few days.

That might well be difficult having to play two games in three days on the back of a squad only just now coming out of their 14-day isolation period.

The last time these sides met Derry City felt hard done by as they lost 2-1 after conceding a comedy own goal through Colm Horgan on 78 minutes with Pico Lopes scoring the winner three minutes later.

Referee: Damien MacGraith

The Hoops won three games against the Candystripes last year – a 2-0 victory in the first game in Tallaght that season along with 1-0 and 2-0 wins in the Brandywell. Derry came from two goals down in Tallaght in June to draw 2-2 in the other league encounter.

It is over three years since Derry last beat the Hoops – that was a 2-0 win in Tallaght in August 2017. 

Derry City were the first away team to win a match at Tallaght Stadium. The Candystripes beat the Hoops 2-1 in March 2009 coming from behind after trailing to a Dessie Baker strike thanks to goals from Thomas Stewart and Ciaran Martyn 


Shamrock Rovers 4/11; Draw x16/5; Derry City 7/1.


2-0 home win

Shamrock Rovers 

Injured: Neil Farrugia, Gary O’Neill, Rory Gaffney, Greg Bolger

Doubtful: None.

Suspended: Joey O'Brien.

Derry City

InjuredAlly Gilchrist

Doubtful: None 

Suspended: None


Shamrock Rovers
Alan Mannus 1
Roberto Lopes 4
Lee Grace 5
Liam Scales 15
Aaron McEneff 10
Daniel Lafferty 3
64Subbed Off: Sean Kavanagh 64'
© Ronan Finn 8
64Subbed Off: Max Murphy 64'
Jack Byrne 29
Graham Burke 21
Scored: 58'
64Subbed Off: Aaron Greene 64'
Dylan Watts 7
Booked: 22'
75Subbed Off: Darragh Nugent 75'
Dean Williams 19
75Subbed Off: Thomas Oluwa 75'

Rhys Marshall 2
Sean Kavanagh 11
64Subbed On: Daniel Lafferty 64'
Aaron Greene 9
64Subbed On: Graham Burke 64'
Scored: 90'
Max Murphy
64Subbed On: Ronan Finn 64'
Darragh Nugent
75Subbed On: Dylan Watts 75'
Thomas Oluwa 26
75Subbed On: Dean Williams 75'
Leon Pohls 25
Derry City
1 Peter Cherrie
6 Eoin Toal
Cameron McJannet
Booked: 65'
3 Ciaran Coll
20 Darren Cole
Defender 46'
46Subbed Off: Gerardo Bruna 46'
17 Joe Thomson
Midfielder 69'
69Subbed Off: Ciaron Harkin 69'
22 Conor McCormack ©
Booked: 90'
29 Jack Malone
Booked: 60'
10 Walter Figueira
Midfielder 80'
80Subbed Off: Patrick Ferry 80'
16 Conor Clifford
Midfielder 68'
68Subbed Off: Jake Dunwoody 68'
7 Adam Hammill
Forward 69'
69Subbed Off: James Akintunde 69'

4 Ciaron Harkin
Midfield 69'
69Subbed On: Joe Thomson 69'
Booked: 87'
13 Nathan Gartside
31 Patrick Ferry
Forward 80'
80Subbed On: Walter Figueira 80'
14 Jake Dunwoody
Midfield 68'
68Subbed On: Conor Clifford 68'
8 Gerardo Bruna
Midfield 46'
46Subbed On: Darren Cole 46'
15 Ronan Boyce
11 James Akintunde
Forward 69'
69Subbed On: Adam Hammill 69'