Derry City players will be happy to be back playing - insists manager Ruaidhrí Higgins

Derry City manager Ruaidhrí Higgins has confirmed that recent signing Ben Doherty will feature in tomorrow night’s Billy Kee Memorial Cup clash against Institute (KO 7.45pm).

Doherty trained alongside fellow new signings Colm Whelan and Tadhg Ryan on Monday and Higgins revealed he expects his latest addition to feature at some stage on Wednesday evening.

"It will be nice to be back on the pitch and the game will be a good gauge of where we’re at physically as well,” insisted Higgins.

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"Pre-season has been hard work, but the players’ attitude has been absolutely spot on, there’s real hunger in the squad.

Derry City's Ben Doherty will play at least 45 minutes against Institute, in the Billy Kee Memorial Cup game. Picture by George Sweeney

"Everyone is the same, you have to work hard in pre-season to get your base but I think we’re ready for a game. We’ll share the minutes but it’s good to get back out onto the pitch. That’s what players like doing, they like playing football.

"No one will play the full 90 minutes and we’ll share the minutes, but Ben will play, probably 45 minutes. He has come in and looked good in training over the last few days. He’s settled in seamlessly to the group and I think he’s looking forward to putting on the Derry jersey again."

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The Limavady man also revealed that Whelan remains on course with his recovery from an ACL injury, but confirmed he will miss the early part of the season. However striking pair, Jamie McGonigle and Cian Kavanagh, are back and firing on all cylinders.

"Collie is doing really well but there’s so many different targets you have to hit coming back from his type of injury. We knew that he would miss the start of the season, but Cian has come back like a man possessed,” explained Higgins.

"He’s looking really fit, strong and hungry and Jamie has also come back with the bit between his teeth. The cup final goal would have been absolutely brilliant for him.

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"He scored a lot of big goals for us last season, so we know that we’ve got two outstanding strikers who bring something different to the team which means we won’t be rushing Collie back.”

Higgins also confirmed that he may have a trialist coming in over the next few weeks.

"We are working on a few things and we wouldn’t rule out on getting someone in to have a look at over the coming weeks,” he added.