FOOTBALL: Dundalk hit Derry for four

Dundalk's Robbie Benson lifts the ball over Gerard Doherty for their opening goal.
Dundalk's Robbie Benson lifts the ball over Gerard Doherty for their opening goal.

Derry City 0-4 Dundalk

For the second week running Dundalk showed why they are still champions.

Although Derry City boss Kenny Shiels felt prior to their FAI Cup exit, that his side was getting closer to the Lilywhites, in both games in the space of seven days the Oriel Park out fit have been head and shoulders above the Candy Stripes.

Shiels admitted after the contest at Maginn Park that he would take the blame for the hammering and he apologised to the fans for his 'poor management' this week at training.

“I have to take the blame because I’ve been really frustrated this week,” he stated.

“I was throwing out negative energy to the players, I was argumentative, I was frustrated and I was giving out negative energy.

“I was like a bear with a sore head. I was just hurting so much from last week and I let it transfer onto the training ground and I apologise to the supporters for that; that’s poor management.

“I don’t want any blame attached to the players because I said we can go up against them but I didn’t realise how far they were ahead of us.

“We tried to be too open against them and we’re not good enough. We’re not anywhere as near as good as them and we have to accept that.

“It was foolhardy of me to go up against a team that was so much better than us because you are only going to get opened up, and that’s my fault. Let’s not look at any of the players.”

The home side made one change to their side which lost heavily last week at Oriel Park with Conor McDermott coming in for Nathan Boyle.

The change meant McDermott slotted into his regular right-back position with Lukas Schubert moving back into his familiar right-wing slot.

Stephen Kenny's side started on the front foot with Michael Duffy continuing where he left off last week, but he fired just wide on 11 minutes.

A minute later the referee's assistant's flag came to City's rescue after John Mountney thought he had given his side the lead after turning the ball home, it was ruled out for offside.

Duffy was in the thick of the action on 17 minutes as his super last ditch sliding tackle blocked Schubert's goal bound strike, after City broke quickly on the counter-attack.

The deadlock was broken on 23 minutes as a super pass by Mountney released Benson and the midfielder made no mistake lifting the ball over the out-rushing Gerard Doherty.

Two minutes later Dundalk added a second, as McDermott gave possession to Patrick McEleney, he composed himself and clipped the ball with the outside of his right foot to the back post and McMillan made no mistake side footing home past Doherty.

Incredibly Dundalk added a third just after the half hour mark, as Duffy's stinging 20 yard drive could only be parried straight into Benson's path by Doherty and the ex-UCD man coolly slotted home the rebound.

Dundalk with their tails up added a fourth on 41 minutes, as Duffy's left wing centre flashed across the box and found an unmarked Mountney who drilled the ball home past a hapless.

The visitors took their foot off the gas in the second half but had chances to increase their lead.

Firstly on 68 minutes McMillan latched onto Duffy's centre, but he failed to trouble Doherty and fired over.

Then five minutes later a super defensive splitting pass by Brian Gartland found substitute Tommy Stewart, who despite nipping the ball around the out-rushing Doherty, his effort hit the side netting.

Derry City: G Doherty, McDermott, Cole, Barry, Jarvis; Low, McEneff, McNamee; Schubert (McIntyre 58), Patterson (Boyle 50), Curtis (Dolny 62).

Dundalk: Rogers, Gannon, Gartland, Vemmelund, Massey; Mountney, Shields, Benson (Clifford HT), Duffy; McEleney (Kinsella 70), McMillan (Stewart 62).

Referee: Paul McLaughlin (Donegal).