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31/07/2021

All eyes on Derry City as they head to title-challenging St. Pat's this evening

Ruaidhri Higgins says his team is 'confident' ahead of game at Inchicore

Derry City

Derry City fell to a 2-0 defeat at St. Patrick's Athletic earlier this season.

St. Patrick's Athletic vs. Derry City

Tonight, 7:45pm

Ruaidhri Higgins believes that the new players at Derry City can help cover the loss of Will Patching as the Candystripes head to St. Patrick’s Athletic tonight ‘confident’.

Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe and Jamie McGonigle have boosted City’s attacking options considerably in the last week, and the club’s fans got a taste of what might be to come in last weekend’s impressive 2-0 win over Waterford. Since then the club have also announced Patrick McEleney will be returning to the club, with efforts ongoing to bring him to Derry in this transfer window. 

That boost in attack could not have come at a better time with games against St. Pat’s and champions Shamrock Rovers up next for Higgins and his players.

“We’ve a bit more depth at the top end of the pitch,” Higgins agreed. “We can now bring experienced players off the bench to make a difference. We have really good young players here as well but in key moments in games if you can call on a wee bit of experience and know-how at the top end it’s a good plus to have.

“Obviously we have lost Will Patching, that bit of creativity but I felt that balance of the team was good against Waterford. We’re on a decent run and the players are in good form and in good spirits so we go to Inchicore confident. The players are confident and we know that it will be a very difficult task but we know that if we are at the top of the game we’ll get a good result.”

St. Pat’s are in a title challenge with Sligo and Rovers this season, and Higgins is in no doubt at the size of the task facing his players this evening.

“It will be a very hard game,” he said.  

“I’ve been down there when they were very unfortunate to lose the game against Shamrock Rovers. I actually thought over the 90 minutes they were the better team. They have beaten Sligo at home recently as well and they are up at the top end of the league for a reason. They are a very, very good team and they are well coached and there’s obviously a lot of good players and staff there. We are very aware of their strengths and we know that we need to be well prepared to get a positive result out of the game.”

The City boss is content that his vision for his team is slowly but surely materialising, with last week’s performance against Waterford an encouraging one.

“In terms of possession of the ball, and control of the game, it’s what I like,” he said. “There are still areas that need improvement without doubt. As I said, this year is all about developing a team and building foundations and I think so far it has gone well, but we know there are improvement to be made and we’ll improve over time.”

Meanwhile, a number of Irish League clubs and League of Ireland clubs continue to court David Parkhouse as the striker considers his future. As well as Ballymena, Larne, Linfield and Cliftonville, Finn Harps are also interested in Parkhouse, who looks set to leave the Brandywell before the end of the month.

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