League Preview: Waterford -v- Derry City

Fri, May 25 2018

Armin Aganovic scored his only goal for the Candystripes in their 2-1 defeat on the opening day in Waterford. Credit: Michael P Ryan

WATERFORD

Waterford will look to return to winning form when they welcome Derry City to the RSC on Friday evening (kick-off 7.45pm).

The Blues are winless in four games after following up draws against Shamrock Rovers and Bray Wanderers with defeats to Limerick and Dundalk.

Following Friday's 6-3 home defeat to Limerick, the Blues put in an improved performance against the league leaders at Oriel Park.

“First half Dundalk were very good and they scored a good goal,” Waterford manager Alan Reynolds told the club's media team.

“But second half we were really good and it’s important that we bring that second-half performance into Friday

“We played some great football and that's what we’ve done well this season and we were unlucky not to equalise.

“We were still beaten and we can’t forget that, but I couldn’t ask for anymore from the lads after the second-half showing.

On Derry, he added: “We were unlucky not to take anything from the game in the Brandywell the last time we played them.

“Kenny [Shiels] always has his sides well prepared and we’ll expect nothing less. They had a good win at home on Monday so they’ll be full of confidence.”

Defenders Garry Comerford and John Kavanagh are long-term absentees, while Paul Keegan and Gavan Holohan are doubts after picking up knocks against Dundalk.

Midfielder Stanley Aborah is available once more after his automatic one-game suspension following his red card against Limerick, but could face further action.

 

DERRY CITY

Derry City will overtake Waterford in third place with a win of any kind at the RSC due to their superior goal difference.

It will be easier said than done for a Derry side who have struggled at times with the long travelling distance required for fixtures in the south of the country.

The Candystripes returned to winning ways at home to Bray Wanderers on Monday after their heavy 5-2 defeat by St Patrick's Athletic the previous Friday.

Aaron McEneff scored both goals, increasing his personal tally to 10 for the season from midfield.

"Waterford have had a fantastic season so far and are one of the sides right up there in contention,” Derry boss Kenny Shiels told the club's media team.

“They have a very physical style of play so we need to be able to stand up to that and need a strong referee too."

"It's going to be very difficult to go there and win but that's the target we set ourselves ahead of every match.

“We need to make sure we do what we can to stay competitive in that fight for a top four place."

Shiels has concerns over the fitness of defender Gavin Peers but expects Nicky Low and Darren Cole to return after sitting out the Bray game.

 

Referee: Rob Rogers

 

MATCH STATS

The sides have met twice so far this season with home sides taking the three points on each occasion.

Waterford won at home in their first game back in the Premier Division as goals from Gavan Holohan and Dean O'Halloran overturned Armin Aganovic's early opener.

The return game in Derry went the home side's way as Jack Doyle scored his first Candystripes goal, the only one of the game.

 

BETTING

Waterford evens; Draw 5/2; Derry City 12/5.

PREDICTION

Waterford 1 – 2 Derry City

 

Waterford

Injured: Garry Comerford, John Kavanagh.

Doubtful: Paul Keegan, Gavan Holohan.

Suspended: None.

Derry City

Injured: None.

Doubtful: Darren Cole, Nicky Low, Gavin Peers.

Suspended: None.