Bright start sets up Derry for vital victory

Thursday, 22 February 2018

Bright start sets up Derry for vital victory thumbnailDerry secured their first National League win of the season with a hard-earned victory over Offaly at Celtic Park. Wk08053

A SIZZLING opening 15 minutes of excellent football had the Derry fans purring.
They saw their relatively young team shoot into a 1-6 to nil lead against the breeze but that was it. They did not score again for another 25 minutes as a mediocre Offaly team kept closing the gap.
Fortunately, Derry had James Kielt, Mark Lynch and Danny Tallon to come of the bench in the final quarter and all three made an impact.
New manager Damian McErlain has been tasked with rebuilding the fortunes of Derry football but he has a mountainous task. It is easy to point to the unavailability of the Slaughtneil players but that will not cure all ills.
This was A clash of teams who had lost their opening two games and there is little doubt that Offaly is the weakest team in the league. Derry had the chance to really hammer them but too many basic errors and players drifting far out of their positions did not help.
From being nine points up at the end of the first quarter they looked in danger of defeat when the Faithful County men cut the margin to just two points in the second half. It is early days yet but the prospect of relegation is still hanging over them.
Managers pick teams as they see it but, truthfully, some of this Derry team look to be out of position. Kevin Johnston looks cramped at full back. He plays his club football ether at half back or midfield. On the other hand, Liam McGoldrick, who has played at half back, is the full back for his club Coleraine. Unfortunately, McGoldrick was not available for this game. Another Coleraine player, Ruairi Mooney, looked uncomfortable at corner back. His club position is midfield.
*Read the full story in this week's Chronicle


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