Derry City v Sligo Rovers
After Thursday night’s 4-1 home reverse in the Europa League, City return to Airtricity Premier Division action this afternoon when they host Sligo Rovers at Maginn Park.
Today kicks off the first in a series of Sunday games for the Candystripes, and also marks Gerard Lyttle’s first official fixtures against Derry. The Belfast native had just been announced when City last played the Bit O’Red, but the former Cliftonville boss now has his feet under the table at the Showgrounds.
Whilst City’s focus has been on Europe in recent weeks, Shiels side have now lost four games in a row if European and domestic fxitures are included and will be looking to reverse this today. City will be hoping for Darren Cole, the new Scottish signing to slot into the defence, to offer some much needed respite to the walking wounded in that area. Conor McDermott continues to miss out and with Aaron Barry struggling with injury and Scott Whiteside forced off on Thursday night, City certainly need reinforcements in that area.
In midfield, Barry McNamee returns to contention but with Rory Holden impressing in both European ties, the Ramelton man has some competition on his hands. Josh Daniels and Mark Timlin continue to try to battle their way into the managers’ plan, but Schubert and Curtis appear to have the wide spots sown up at the moment. Rory Patterson is back available for selection and saw game time in both Denmark and midweek during the European fixtures.
Looking at the opposition, Lyttle has begun to add some new faces, not least of them ex Candystripe, Seamus Sharkey. However Sligo have not yet received international clearance for Benny Igiehon whilst they will also be missing John Russell who picked up a red card in their win against Shamrock Rovers. Kieran Sadlier has departed the Showgrounds for Leeside and will be a bit loss to Sligo, but the manager can welcome back Donegal man Kyle Callan-McFadden.
The visitors have yet to win away from home this season, but with City falling slightly off the pace with the four side ahead of them, Shiels will be desperate that his side closes the gap.
Kick off in Maginn Park is 2.30