Ruaidhrí Higgins hopes momentum is starting to build behind his title chasing Derry City side

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RUAIDHRÍ Higgins hopes momentum is starting to build behind his Derry City side but isn't getting overly excited by the Brandywell club's improving form.

Second half goals from Will Patching and Pat Hoban against Galway United clinched back-to-back wins for the Foylesiders for just the third time this season.

They remain just two points behind league leaders Shelbourne heading into the final game before the midseason break this Thursday night when they take on Bohemians at Dalymount Park.

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Higgins is 'proud' of how his team responded to a three match winless run as they claimed seven points from a possible nine in a productive week for a team hot on the heels of Damien Duff's Shelbourne.

Derry City striker Pat Hoban celebrates his 11th goal of the season in the win against Galway on Friday night. Photograph by Kevin Moore.Derry City striker Pat Hoban celebrates his 11th goal of the season in the win against Galway on Friday night. Photograph by Kevin Moore.
Derry City striker Pat Hoban celebrates his 11th goal of the season in the win against Galway on Friday night. Photograph by Kevin Moore.

Wins against in-form Waterford and Galway have followed draws against Sligo and Dundalk and Higgins believes the manner of the victories will instil belief.

"It was important to get back to winning ways," said the City boss. "We lost to Shamrock Rovers and there was disappointment and then we drew our next two but since that we've won two games and won them well with positive performances.

"We want to try and find a real level of consistency. Players are getting fitter as well. You look at [Sadou] Diallo with more minutes; [Cameron] Dummigan has more minutes, so we're happy with where the squad's at and hopefully we can find some consistency now."

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Derry have lost just once in 11 games and have kept three clean sheets in a row. They've also taken 26 points from a possible 36 at Brandywell so far - their best run at home since 2006! Higgins believes Brandywell must become a fortress if they're to end a 27 year wait for the title.

"It's really important. I think for us to be successful and achieve anything this place needs to be the way it is at the minute and hopefully we can keep that going.

"Between Monday and Friday, scoring goals at home and creating opportunities, I'm sure it will give our supporters happiness and a bit of belief as well.

"Everyone looks for consistency and continuity and I certainly do. From Monday to Friday, Diallo for Patrick [McEleney] is our only change and you can probably see that in our play. I'm happy with the weeks' work. I'm proud of our players and we have to go down to Dublin next week and try and win the game."

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Patience was the key to breaking Galway's resolve and also a bit of 'class' according to John Caulfield.

"Quality to be fair," said the Galway boss. "We hung in there first half and were giving everything but you could see in the second half we were under massive pressure. The quality of their players, they're so good but we were disappointed with the goals. I think it was just a case that Derry showed their quality.

"At the end of the day they're challenging for the league. Our aim to ensure we survive. Whatever about tonight, our next match is Thursday against Drogheda and that's a massive natch for us."

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