Derry City manager Ruaidhrí Higgins pleased with Cork City victory

Derry City boss Ruaidhrí Higgins took plenty of positives from Friday night’s Extra.ie FAI Cup win over Cork City.

And while he would have liked more goals, Higgins stressed that every cup tie is ultimately about progressing to the next round which is exactly what his team did by reaching the quarter-finals.

The Limavady man, who described Ruairi Keating’s red card as ‘harsh’, admits the Candy Stripes have the mindset of seeking to go all the way to the Aviva Stadium in November and lifting the FAI Cup.

“We picked a team to go and be aggressive and get after the game, but I would have liked more goals for our dominance in the game,” said the City boss.

Derry City's Cameron McJannet heads away from Cork City's Kevin O'Connor.

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“You go in 1-0 up at half-time and you’re thinking, ‘Come on, don’t let this happen again’, but we were professional and when the sending off - which from where I was standing I have to admit it didn’t look like a red card - but there were a few very, very strange decisions tonight. Look, we want to win it and we’ll have a go at it, that’s for sure.

“We played Oliver Bond and we picked a really strong team and we obviously picked a strong team tonight, so lets be honest, we want to win the competition.

“I think we’re good enough to win the competition but let’s see what the draw brings. We know on our day we can beat anybody. I think this group of players is more than capable.”

Goals from midfield pair Will Patching and Sadou Diallo sealed the win over Cork’s 10 men with Higgins delighted to see Michael Duffy play the entire game. It was the winger’s first 90 minutes since returning to his home town club and Higgins feels the 28-year-old is getting up to speed at the right time of the season.

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“We’re in the next round and that was the main thing tonight,” he insisted, “Again we got into loads of good areas and probably should have had a few more goals to show for our dominance in the game. Even at 11 versus 11 we were the dominant team.

“But look, it’s a good win and we’re in the hat so we’re delighted with that.

“It was a bit longer than what I would have liked but it was a good finish by Sad’s (Sadou Diallo). He’s got quality and can knit the game together early in our build-up but we also feel that he can have a creative side to him at the top end of the pitch as well.

“We have so many offensive midfield players, it’s trying to get that balance right and it’s great that he’s now got his first goal for the club.

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“It’s Michael Duffy’s first 90 minutes since the end of last season which is a huge step in the right direction for him and we’re all delighted for him. He’ll be sore now for a few days I would imagine but it’s brilliant. It has been a long road for him.

Patching’s goal came courtesy of an excellent first half penalty, his first since missing from the spot against Shamrock Rovers recently with Higgins adding he never had a doubt about his talented playmaker.

“Will’s missed one penalty probably in his life so we’ll not get too hung up about that one. I have heard a lot about it and I don’t hear as much when he scores goals but, yeah, it’s great he scored.

“He practiced a few on Thursday and he put them exactly where he put it tonight. He’s a cool customer and an amazing footballer.”

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