FOOTBALL: City lose on the road

Derry City manager Kenny Shiels.
Derry City manager Kenny Shiels.

Galway United 2-1 Derry City

DERRY City suffered their third defeat in a row and now sit a point behind fellow European hopefuls Shamrock Rovers.

Kenny Shiels' men were disappointing, as not for the first time this season, they were missing that cutting edge in the final third.

Rory Patterson's work-rate up top was very good and his display was capped off by him finally getting his first goal of the season, however the United keeper Conor Winn had somewhat of an easy night and wasn't really tested.

Derry started with a more traditional 4-4-2 formation.

Eoin Toal was given his second start of the season alongside centre-back Aaron Barry; Harry Monaghan slotted into right-back and Conor McDermott moved across to left-back, Ben Doherty filled in just front of him and Ronan Curtis moved up top alongside Patterson.

The home side started with a spring in their step and went at City right from the off with Ronan Murray and Padraic Cunningham causing problems, but it was midfielder Gavan Holohan who had the first shot in anger, but his long range strike flashed over.

Minutes later Patterson, who was making his 13th start of the season, went close but his left footed strike from close range, which had keeper Winn beaten, was blocked by centre-back Niall Maher.

The home side deservedly took the lead on 14 minutes as Holahan's drive on the edge of the box was charged down by Toal, but the ball fell perfectly for Kevin Devaney, who side footed past Gerard Doherty.

To City's credit they went close twice in quick succession to levelling things but Patterson and Lukas Schubert's both failed to test Winn.

Firstly Patterson's left footed strike was again blocked by Maher and Schubert's close range over head kick, from Patterson's clever chip, sailed just over.

As they slowly continued to build up some pressure City drew level on 33 minutes as Aaron Barry's 25 yard drive fell into Patterson's path, the striker took a touch before turning the ball low into Winn's bottom right hand corner.

Early in the second half a quickly taken free-kick by Low released Patterson, but his poor effort was easily gathered by Winn.

Just after the hour mark Ronan Murray nearly got in after Toal's tame header was only parried by Doherty, straight into the striker's path, but he was unable to turn the loose ball home into the empty net.

The winning goal came on 79 minutes as Colin Horgan's left wing centre wasn't dealt with by City and Folan was on hand to blast the loose ball home.

Galway United: Winn, Horgan, Ludden, Maher (Byrne 22), Holohan (Melody 88), Cawley, Cunningham (McCormack 73), Devaney, Hale, Murray, Folan.

Derry City: G Doherty, Monaghan, Toal, Barry, McDermott; Schubert (McIntyre 85), Low, McNamee, B Doherty (C Farren 85); Curtis, Patterson..

Referee: Ray Matthews (Mullingar).