Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins "gutted" but proud of players after Cup exit
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Despite the heartache of Tobol, holders Derry produced a dominant display and should have won in normal time but a failure to capitalise on a number of good chances meant their fate came down to spot-kicks once more.
And even after Jake Mulraney was off target for the Dubliners, Derry were unable to take advantage as misses by Michael Duffy and Mark Connolly saw City relinquish the trophy they won last November.
"It's an extremely tough one to take. We have deserved to win both games, absolutely. The players deserve a lot more," lamented Higgins.
"Ifs, buts and maybes but what these players have given over the last while, and in particular the last four days, going to the well in both games, they deserve huge credit. I’m absolutely gutted for them but we have to dust ourselves off and get ready for a big league finale.
"We’re well in the mix and playing really well. We need to continue that. We need to come in during the week with our chests out and our heads up because the players have been brilliant. As I said, we are playing well and we need to continue that."
St. Pat's conservative approach saw the Candy Stripes own possession for large periods with Ciaran Coll and Jamie McGonigle going close with headers before Will Patching saw his free kick cannon off the inside of the Pat's post.
"We had chances and were the better team and should have won," admitted Higgins, "They tried to frustrate us but we were good and opened them up.
"The players are gutted, but we’re in really good form. We’re playing some brilliant stuff at the minute and are on a good run, it's important we don't forget that. It's important we remind ourselves of the way we’re playing.
"We spoke after Thursday about not getting too downbeat because of the performance and we have said the same tonight. The commitment they have put in, the players have gone to the well over and over again and deserve huge credit. We know if we keep our performance levels where they are at the moment then they will go close."