Derry City v St Patrick’s Athletic, 7.45pm
After nearly a decade in the Derry City front line, Mark Farren makes his Brandywell exit this evening when he plays his last game for the Candystripes. However, with second placed St Pat’s the visitors, there is plenty to play for ahead of next month’s FAI Cup final clash.
Farren is struggling to make with a thigh strain and may start on the bench, with David McDaid expected to return to lead the line against the Saints. McDaid, who enjoyed a tremendous run of nine goals in ten games, was rested against Shamrock Rovers but with Patterson suspended and Farren an injury doubt, it is expected that City’s number nine will slot back into the starting eleven.
Devine has seen his side unbeaten in four games, scoring eleven and oinly conceding twice in the period and he is anxious that his side continue that momentum right to the end of tonight’s game. The Saints have already beaten City twice this season and many neturals felt that they were very unlucky to lose in Sligo last week. A disputed late penalty cost the Saints a share of the spoils and handed the League to the home side, but Liam Buckley’s side have been terrific all season and have their eye on second spot as well as Cup glory.
Devine has seen the return of players such as Greacen, Deery and McLaughlin in recent weeks and this has allowed City to field a much more competitive panel. Supplemented by the impressive performance of youngsters such as McNamee and Curran, City have fought their way back into contention for the Setanta Cup and will look to end the season on a high.
The manager dismissed any thoughts of player being “rested” for the final,
“Now we have players returning to full fitness and, as I’ve maintained all along, when at full strength we are match for any team in the Premier Division.
“With that in mind, key players will not be rested as they need games to improve their fitness levels and we will be fielding the strongest team available to us.”
As well as the three points, many City fans are wondering will there be a fairytale Brandywell ending for the number 18, Mark Farren.