DERRY CITY caretaker boss, Paul Hegarty insists his side will once again go all guns blazing at Markets Field tonight in search of a win which should clinch their Premier Division survival. (K.o 6.30 p.m.)
Victory for the ‘Candy Stripes’ over basement club, Limerick, coupled with favourable results elsewhere, would guarantee Derry’s safety.
Longford Town’s superb win against Cork City at Turner’s Cross last night meant Derry dropped back into seventh place. However, a defeat for Sligo Rovers tonight, who entertain Bohemians, and the 2-1 loss for Drogheda United against St Pat’s last night (Friday), means Hegarty’s troops can sit back and relax with two games to go should they win against Limerick!
However, the Derry boss doesn’t expect to get it easy at Markets Field and is prepared for a formidable challenge from one of the in-form teams in the league at present.
Limerick, who continue to scrap for their lives after a dismal opening to their league campaign, have taken a magnificent 20 points from a possible 27 to keep alive their hopes of avoiding the drop.
A significant 3-1 win against Galway last weekend further boosted their hopes and will no doubt ensure a bumper crowed at Markets Field tonight.
If we win on Saturday night and that proves to be enough then that would be great. We’re not expecting any favours from anyone else - we need to go and do our own business and that’s what we’re focussing on.Paul Hegarty
And while Hegarty is wary of the challenge poised by the Shannonsiders, he believes his side - bolstered by the return of Ryan McBride and Aaron Barry - are good enough to ‘do the business’.
“It’s a massive game for both clubs,” he said.
“It’s a must win game for the lot of us. I think it will be a good game between two teams who will want to play on the big pitch and a good surface which should make for a good game.
“If the league had started 10 matches ago they would probably be sitting first or second in the table. They are the form team but to be fair we’re playing quite well too.
“We’ll not be afraid going down there,” he added.
“We’ll be going to win the match. It’s not in our DNA to go and look for a point so we’ll try and win the game.
“If you look at the two teams individually then there’s not a lot between the two. I think it will come down to who wants it more on match day.
“To be fair to our boys they look hungry and they want to get at it.”
Hegarty was delighted with the display against Bray last week but he believes his side must improve if they are to defeat Limerick.
“There’s a good spirit in the team but we’re not under any illusions - we need to get much better than what we are at the minute.
“I don’t think the performance against Bray would be good enough to win down in Limerick so we need to step it up again. We can get better and that’s the good thing. There’s a bit more in the tank and we need to push on.
“We need to see if we can get our three points. Whatever happens elsewhere we have no control over. If we win on Saturday night and that proves to be enough then that would be great. We’re not expecting any favours from anyone else - we need to go and do our own business and that’s what we’re focussing on.
“Our attacking mentality won’t change. I think the players enjoy playing like that. “
“It will likely come down to who’s the most clinical on the night,” he concluded.