McLaughlin’s keeping targets to himself

Match official Neil Doyle sends off Bohemians' Adam Martin for his challenge on Derry's Stephen McLaughlin at the Brandywell on Friday night. Photo: Lorcan Doherty/Presseye.com

Match official Neil Doyle sends off Bohemians' Adam Martin for his challenge on Derry's Stephen McLaughlin at the Brandywell on Friday night. Photo: Lorcan Doherty/Presseye.com

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He may have scored the winning goal against Bohemians at the Brandywell on Friday night but Derry City player Stephen McLaughlin is refusing to reveal what targets he has set himself for the season.

“I’ve set myself a target in my head but I think I’ll keep it to myself - I’ll tell you when I reach it,” joked the 21 year old Donegal man.

�/Lorcan Doherty Photography - 25th February 2012. ''Derry City Football Club 2012.''Photo Lorcan Doherty Photography

�/Lorcan Doherty Photography - 25th February 2012. ''Derry City Football Club 2012.''Photo Lorcan Doherty Photography

McLaughlin’s goal came in the 49th minute when he converted an amazing Simon Madden cross by heading the ball past Bohemians ‘keeper Craig Sexton.

“Simon [Madden] did the exact same thing against Lisburn [Distillery] a few weeks ago. As soon as Simon gets into that position he whips the ball into the back stick. When I saw him with the ball tonight I knew exactly where to go. Each time Simon gets the ball I am going to be there every time and I’ll be waiting on it.

“I’ve scored two identical goals courtesy of Simon’s passing and I hope that there is more to come.”

Friday’s match was Derry’s first game of the 2012 League of Ireland season and McLaughlin said that the players were delighted with the result.

“It was a good result for us because Declan [Devine] was telling us after the game that it was first time in a few years that we won our opening game of the season. It’s great to get three points on the opening day of the season and whilst I think tonight’s performance was ok we will definitely get better.

“Bohemians are a good team so it’s good from that point of view that we got a win over them tonight.

“Everyone is buzzing and we are all looking forward to the Linfield game.”

McLaughlin went on to praise Derry’s back five and said that he was confident of success this season.

“We have a solid back five in defence. I think Gerard Doherty is the best goalkeeper in the league and we have the best central defenders in the league too. We are going to be solid at the back. Other teams will be solid too so it’s up to us to make sure we put the ball in the back of the net.

“Gerard pulled off a great save to keep us in it in the second half and you can’t praise him enough when they [Bohemians] are playing like that.

“When you get your opportunities you need to take them and I think that we took ours tonight.

“Ruaidhri Higgins and Barry Molloy are best midfielders in the league in my opinion. For the likes of me and Patrick they are a pleasure to play alongside because they are great at getting the ball to us. With the likes of Davy McDaid and Rory Patterson up front, chances are going to come our way and we will score goals.

“As I said, I think we have the best defence in the league and I think that once we have a few games under our belt people will see just how well we could do this year.”