Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins happy with squad

Derry City manager Ruaidhri Higgins says he will look at the list of the foreign players based in Russia and Ukraine who have been offered to clubs throughout Europe and beyond.

Derry City's Cameron Dummigan produced a man of the match display at Shelbourne last Friday night. Picture by Kevin Moore/mci
Derry City's Cameron Dummigan produced a man of the match display at Shelbourne last Friday night. Picture by Kevin Moore/mci

Higgins was amongst the managers to receive a list of 646 overseas born players (340 in Ukraine and 306 in Russia) that have received permission from FIFA to leave their current employers and sign for new clubs between now and April 7 with transfer window rules abandoned.

The Candy Stripes boss stressed that he is happy with his current group of players but due to the recent injuries to Ciaron Harkin and Michael Duffy, he admitted the depth of his squad may be a bit light.

“We’ll have a look at it but I’m very happy with the squad I have. One thing that we don’t have is massive depth and I think you can see that when we are missing a few,” insisted Higgins.

“Once we are missing a few players we don’t have a huge depth at all, but we have got good players who are versatile and that’s proved to be very beneficial so far already and we are only a few games into the season.

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“Yes we are having a look at the list but as I said, we’re happy with the group that we have.

“Obviously Ciaron Harkin has a long term injury but I do think that we have good cover in that area. You saw with (Cameron) Dummigan’s display last week, he looked like he had been playing there for 10 years.

“We also have Joe Thomson, Jack Malone and Gerard Storey, we have good numbers in that area so it’s not something we’re actively looking at.”

City travel to bottom side UCD tomorrow evening and while the visitors are the bookmakers’ favourites, Higgins isn’t taking anything for granted.

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In fact, the Limavady man believes tomorrow night’s encounter at the UCD Bowl is a ‘dangerous’ game for his side and is demanding his players put in a professional job.

“It’s going to be a different type of atmosphere than what we have been used to in our first four games, where there mightn’t be loads of people in the ground on Friday,” he added.

“But we have got really good characters and good professionals here and I expect, and demand, that the players be totally professional and put in a good performance.

“Top of the league after four games is nothing. The way I look at it there is no league table at the minute.

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“We just want to try and keep a bit of momentum going for as long as we can and try to pick up three points, like we do in every other game. We know that this is a really dangerous game.

“If we don’t go about our business in the right manner then they’ll beat us but if we do then we have a chance of winning.”

Higgins also feels the ‘Students’ were unlucky not to take an early lead at champions, Shamrock Rovers, on the opening night of the season and claimed the Dubliners have produced some League of Ireland greats over the years.

“In the Shamrock Rovers game they could have been two or three up before Rovers scored from a set-play,” he explained.

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“Liam Kerrigan is one of the top young attacking players in the country, there’s no doubt about that. Himself and Colm Whelan have been in Ireland U21s international set-up and if you look over the last 20 odd years, UCD have produced some of the best players in League of Ireland history.

“At home they’ll come and express themselves against us but we are in half decent form. We just need to continue that and be really, really professional.”