DERRY CITY: ‘Ryan will remain a part of us but we can’t wallow in self-pity’ - Shiels

LOOKING FORWARD . . . Derry City manager Kenny Shiels. DER0517GS110
LOOKING FORWARD . . . Derry City manager Kenny Shiels. DER0517GS110
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DERRY CITY boss, Kenny Shiels has warned his players they can ill-afford to wallow in self-pity if they are to be successful this season as the club adjusts to the tragedy of Ryan McBride’s sudden death.

As the ‘Candy Stripes’ return to action just eight days after McBride was laid to rest, a highly charged night against Bray Wanderers is anticipated tonight at Maginn Park. There certainly will be a sombre feel surrounding the match which will be preceded by poignant tributes to the club’s late inspirational skipper in the presence of the McBride family.

We have to remove the self-pity and have a clear picture we are doing it for us, being mindful of course that Ryan is part of that. But we are doing it for us.

Kenny Shiels

And given City are symbolically seeking a fifth successive win after just five league matches, Shiels knows it will be difficult for his players to switch off from the emotions of the past two weeks.

However, Shiels has ordered his players to detach themselves from the emotions of the night and concentrate on clinching victory, not just for their late captain but for themselves and all involved with the club.

“I’ve said to them this morning, and I include myself in this, ‘we have to move away from self-pity’. We regard ourselves as Ryan’s second family so we also experience self-pity and ask how does this happen? And we have to move away from that,” said the Derry boss.

“We had a meeting about it and there’s no more self-pity, it’s all about the future. We are not putting out the cliché or adage of ‘we’re doing it for Ryan’ because that’s unfair on the players. We have to do it for ourselves and we class Ryan as being one of us. He’s included in that. Everything we do now is for us, for the club, the players, the supporters - that’s ‘us’.

“We have to remove the self-pity and have a clear picture that we are doing it for us, being mindful of course that Ryan is part of that. But we are doing it for us,” he stressed.

“You can only control the controllable and that’s the way we’re going to work. I’m never going to ask the players to switch off from their emotional feelings towards our former captain.

“But if they’re not directing their emotions properly to getting the best out of themselves then they won’t be in the team basically. We’ve got to have people who are mentally strong and who can provide the right emotions towards winning a game of football.”

Match Preview on Pg 64