Derry City -v- UCDThu, Sep 20 2012
Derry City host UCD at the Brandywell on Friday night, hoping to put their miserable league form behind them although they have recorded a win and a draw in the two previous league meetings between the sides this season.
City have been beaten in their last three league games but Declan Devine will be hoping the worm has turned after last week's annihilation of Mervue United in the FAI cup.
Derry's season long injury problems seem to be easing somewhat with only Rory Patterson unavailable due to a continuing hamstring problem, but they will have to do without the services of defenders Simon Madden and Ryan McBride who sit the game out through suspension. It is expected that Barry McNamee and Shane McEleney will replace the two defenders.
Declan Devine was however wary of the threat posed by Martin Russell's side and said "Over the last number of season we have had very tight games with U.C.D and I expect this to no different, They have been in good form of late and that form has seen them open a gap on Dundalk at the bottom.
"Martin as always will have them playing the game at a very high standard and with flair not often seen in this league but I feel that we have the confidence now to finish out the season on a high. We have to prepare right and go out with the right mentality and work-rate to get something from the game."
With a semi final of the FAI cup looming and competition for places hotting up, the players will be keen to impress Devine and make sure they are in his thoughts at the business end of the season.
UCD travel to the Brandywell on Friday evening looking to continue their excellent league form which has seen them register four wins in their last five outings. However they face an uphill battle as they haven't had a win against the Candystripes in any of their last fourteen encounters in all competitions.
Not having had a fixture last week has allowed Martin Russell to get back some of his injured players, with Cillian Morrison, Graham Rusk, Chris Mulhall, David O'Connor and Mark Langtry all back and available for selection.
Looking ahead to the game, Manager Martin Russell gave his thoughts and said “We are looking to continue our run of recent victories but we know Derry will be full of confidence after their superb win v Mervue in the cup last week and that will keep their season very much alive.
"The Brandywell is a formidable place to go but also a place where the fans appreciate good football and hopefully we can come away with the three points on the night. Most of the long term injury lads have had their first full week back, we are realistic and they will need more time to return to full fitness but it’s good to see them off the treatment table.
"The pattern of the games against Derry so far this season have been tight but we know we will have to play well to come away with something.”
Referee: D McKeon
Of the seasons three fixtures between the sides, Derry have won two and drawn one.
The last time the sides met at the Brandywell it finished scoreless.
Mark Farren plays his first game since becoming the all time Derry City top scorer in the League of Ireland.
Derry City 8/11 Draw 5/2 UCD 7/2.
Derry City 2 v UCD 1
Derry City Injury News: Rory Patterson(hamstring),
Derry City Suspension News:Simon Madden, Ryan McBride .
UCD Injury News:John Kelly(groin).
UCD Suspension News: None.
Jamie Mahon joined the Extratime team at the beginning of 2011. Hailing from the North West, Jamie reports on all things Derry City. He can be contacted at email@example.com or on Twitter @JamieMahon23.