1 - 0
FT

Daniel Mandroiu 79' -
Scored: 79'



League Preview: Shamrock Rovers -v- Derry City

Thu, May 12 2022

Lee Grace races onto the ball with Joe Thomson for company during Derry City's 2-1 home win over Shamrock Rovers in February Credit: John-Paul McGinley

SHAMROCK ROVERS

There is an oft repeated phrase in Spanish football that might be relevant to our humble league these days, “Hay Liga”. Literally ‘there is a league’ but the true translation would be uttered with an increased heartbeat and unconcealed joy, ‘we have a title race’. 

Some might say, the clubs first among them, that it is too soon to call but with an eight point gap between second place Derry City and St Patrick’s Athletic in third and Shamrock Rovers only defeat of the season coming at the hand of the Candystripes we at least have a two horse race. 

Shamrock Rovers have dominated the league in the last two seasons but had fallen slightly off the pace following Derry City’s decent start. However, the Hoops took back the lead of the Premier Division on Monday night following their 3-1 home win against Sligo Rovers while Derry disappointed with a scoreless draw against St Pats despite having the chances to win.

Head Coach Stephen Bradley says his side needs to tune in defensively for Friday’s game as they have given away sloppy goals in otherwise comfortable 3-1 victories over Finn Harps and Sligo Rovers.

Bradley said that Lee Grace has yet to be confirmed fit to play in what would be a blow as the Carrick-on-Suir man has been an ever present at the back for the Hoops this season until last Monday’s match against Sligo.

The game promises a spectacle and is almost a sell-out at the time of writing. The Hoops Head Coach said: “First vs second, in front of what should be a great crowd and two good teams on the pitch. These are the games that everyone wants to play and be a part of, it has all the makings of a great game.”

Rory Gaffney is in fine form for the Hoops with a stunning pressing display last time out against Sligo Rovers as he dovetailed with Graham Burke who completed a fine hat trick off the bench - both were part of four substitutes Bradley made with the game against Sligo scoreless at half-time.

DERRY CITY

City put down an early marker in the title race with their 2-1 home win over the Hoops early in the season.

Looking ahead to the mouthwatering clash on Friday, Candystripes boss Ruairdhi Higgins said: “They have at least four players in the squad who have played at senior international level and there is quality everywhere. It’s why they are back-to-back champions of this league.

"That said, we haven’t been doing too badly ourselves. We’re not going there to sit in, we’re going to try to win the game.”

For the Candystripes the danger man is clearly the recently crowned SSE Airtricity Player of the Month Jamie McGonigle, the first time a Derry City player has won that award in nine years. McGonigle’s well taken goal was the difference between the two sides when they last met in February as he pounced on a rare Pico Lopes error to win the game in the Brandywell.

City will likely be without the service of Patrick McEleney who came off early with an injury on Monday night and also Cameron McJannet who missed the game altogether.

In a sign of their ambition in building a long term challenge for the league Derry City have just announced that Dummigan has extended his contract to 2024 along with the majority of the Derry squad.

One can only hope that this ambition will show itself on Friday night on national television and that no one will be in any doubt that we have a title race this season.

MATCH STATS

Shamrock Rovers with their faithful home support have conceded only five goals in eight games at Tallaght Stadium, scoring 17 in the process. 

Derry City on the other hand have a better record away from the Ryan McBride Brandywell stadium scoring 14 and conceding five in seven games.

The three top scorers in the league will all be playing with Jamie McGonigle (nine), Will Patching and Graham Burke (both with 7 goals). 

PREDICTION

2-2 draw

Shamrock Rovers

Injured: None

Doubtful: Lee Grace, Danny Mandroiu

Suspended: None

Derry City

Injured: Michael Duffy

Doubtful: Patrick McEleney, Cameron McJannet

Suspended: None


Shamrock R
WMay 6, 2022
Shamrock R 3 - 1 Harps
WMay 9, 2022
Shamrock R 3 - 1 Sligo
WMay 13, 2022
Shamrock R 1 - 0 Derry
WMay 19, 2022
UCD 0 - 3 Shamrock R
LMay 23, 2022
Drogheda 1 - 0 Shamrock R
Alan Mannus 1
Goalkeeper
Pico 4
Defender
Sean Hoare 3
Defender
Sean Gannon 2
56'
56Subbed Off: Sean Kavanagh 56'
Defender
Richie Towell 17
Midfielder
Chris McCann 26
69'
69Subbed Off: Dylan Watts 69'
Midfielder
Andy Lyons 22
Midfielder
Ronan Finn 8
81'
81Subbed Off: Barry Cotter 81'
Midfielder
Rory Gaffney 20
69'
69Subbed Off: Daniel Mandroiu 69'
Forward
Jack Byrne 29
Forward
Graham Burke 10
Forward

Substitutes
Dylan Watts 7
69'
69Subbed On: Chris McCann 69'
Midfield
Leon Pohls 25
Goalkeeper
Gary O'Neill 16
Midfield
Daniel Mandroiu 14
69'
69Subbed On: Rory Gaffney 69'
Scored: 79'
Midfield
Sean Kavanagh 11
56'
56Subbed On: Sean Gannon 56'
Defender
Aaron Greene 9
Forward
Neil Farrugia 23
Midfield
Aidomo Emakhu 38
Forward
Barry Cotter 6
81'
81Subbed On: Ronan Finn 81'
Booked: 90'
Midfield
Derry City
DMay 6, 2022
Derry 1 - 1 Bohs
DMay 9, 2022
Derry 0 - 0 St. Pats
LMay 13, 2022
Shamrock R 1 - 0 Derry
LMay 20, 2022
Derry 1 - 2 Dundalk
LMay 23, 2022
Sligo 2 - 1 Derry
26 Brian Maher
Goalkeeper
6 Eoin Toal ©
Defender
16 Shane McEleney
Defender
24 Daniel Lafferty
Defender
23 Cameron Dummigan
Defender
2 Ronan Boyce
Defender
Booked: 36'
8 Joe Thomson
Midfielder
14 Will Patching
Midfielder
20 Brandon Kavanagh
Midfielder 67'
67Subbed Off: James Akintunde 67'
12 Matty Smith
Forward 78'
78Subbed Off: Evan McLaughlin 78'
9 Jamie McGonigle
Forward

Substitutes
21 Gerard Storey
Midfield
33 Caoimhin Porter
Midfield
38 Liam Mullan
Midfield
25 Evan McLaughlin
Defender 78'
78Subbed On: Matty Smith 78'
34 Orrin McLaughlin
Defender
Daithi McCallion
Defender
1 Nathan Gartside
Goalkeeper
3 Ciaran Coll
Defender
11 James Akintunde
Forward 67'
67Subbed On: Brandon Kavanagh 67'

MATCH INFO

Competition: 2022 League of Ireland Premier Division

Date: 8 p.m. May 13, 2022

Venue: Tallaght Stadium

Referee: Neil Doyle

Attendance: 7,126

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