RODDY Collins Jr. had braced himself to be put under the inevitable spotlight when he signed for Derry City, but the defender insists the pressure of being the manager’s son is not too heavy a burden to carry.
The 19 year-old Dubliner was one of Collins’ first signing in the close season, joining forces with his father for a second time after winning the First Division title with Athlone Town.
And while the family reunion was met with some scepticism among City supporters, the right-back has grown into his role in the Derry defence with a string of assured performances.
Roddy Jr. claims there is no nepotism in his father’s managerial approach and believes he’s in the squad on merit.
“I absolutely love it up in Derry,” he said. “I love training with the lads. Obviously at the start, being the manager’s son there were questions asked. But everyone’s settled down now and I’ve no complaints at all.
“There’s always going to be a small minority (of fans) that give you flak but there’s very good support in Derry.
“You always get the other end of things when you’ve had a few draws and you lose a few games and the fans want to complain about it. They’ll fade away now once we start winning games and playing well.
“Starting at a new club with new players is difficult enough without being the manager’s son but you get on with it and show your worth and you do your best out on the pitch.
“People will see why I’m here and if I am (in the team) then I’m there on merit, I have been working hard and I have confidence in my own ability.”
He’s clearly loving life at Brandywell at the minute despite the club’s poor run of form and believes the team can turn around its fortunes, starting at Dalymount Park tomorrow night.
“We’ll approach the game in a positive manner. We’ve established that we can defend so it’s all about progressing.
“We’ve set up a back four and made sure we don’t concede too many. We’ve achieved that and now we’ve got to concentrate on scoring goals and hopefully we can bring that to the table.
“I just see it (the Bohs game) as another game. So we go down there in a positive manner with the view to play well, to create chances and of course to win the game.”