Stewart struggling with swollen face

DERRY City are expected to lose the spine of the team if Stewart Greacen is ruled out for tonight’s Airtricity League encounter with a facial injury. (Kick-off: 7.45 p.m.)

ARTHUR DUFFY reports

The 28-year-old Scot, who was forced off at half-time during last weekend’s share of the spoils against Shamrock Rovers, following a heavy collision with Chris Turner, did not fracture his cheekbone but his face remains both sore and swollen, according to Brandywell boss, Stephen Kenny.

“Thankfully the X-ray didn’t show any fracture but his face remains swollen and sore and we’ll have to wait and see how he is before the game,” confirmed the Dubliner yesterday.

“But he’s a tough guy and while he also has an issue with his hand, I doubt if he will make it,” added Kenny.

And with Barry Molloy ruled out for six weeks with ankle ligament problems and Patrick McEleney deemed inelligible by the F.A.I., the Derry boss will again be forced into further changes for tonight’s visit to the Co. Wickow seaside venue.

Ruaidhri Returns

“Ruaidhri Higgins will return to the squad having overcome a calf strain and given that we got through last Monday night’s League Cup win over Salthill without any injuries, we have capable players ready to step in.”

Kenny agreed that the Carlisle Grounds had, traditionally, not been a happy hunting ground for his “Candy Stripes” having lost out at that venue in last season’s FAI Cup replay.

“Last season our total focus had to be on the league when playing in the First Division. That said, we wanted to win the match but we did make changes for the game and the priority was always on promotion back to the Premier Division.

Difficult Wicklow

Venue

“Last year’s game is in the past, but the Carlisle Grounds has always been a difficult place to get results and I’ve no doubt that will not change on Friday night.

“Bray have made four new signings with Gary Dempsey, Danny O’Connor, Joe Kendrick and Matt Gregg so they’ve added experience to their youth and they’ve got off to a good start to the new season. So we’ll respect them for that but, from our point of view it’s all about getting another win away from home under our belts as I believe that would give everyone at the club a great boost,” continued Kenny.