City of Derry have no room for error against Limavady says Head Coach Richard McCarter

Kukri Ulster Qualifying League, Div One: City of Derry v Limavady (Sat, Judges Road, 2.30pm)
City of Derry Head Coach, Richard McCarter. (Photo: George Sweeney)City of Derry Head Coach, Richard McCarter. (Photo: George Sweeney)
City of Derry Head Coach, Richard McCarter. (Photo: George Sweeney)

Head Coach Richard McCarter says City of Derry have no room for error in Saturday’s north west derby against fellow strugglers Limavady at Judges Road.

Both local clubs have started their Kukri Ulster Qualifying League, Division One campaigns in poor fashion, Derry registering one win and three defeats in four games while Limavady have yet to pick up a point. It’s a scenario which has the Roesiders rooted to the bottom but Derry are only two places above in eighth meaning points will be at a premium this weekend.

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“This week is a total contrast to last week’s game against Ballyclare,” explained McCarter who missed last weekend’s 14-33 defeat to the unbeaten league leaders. “This week certainly isn’t a free hit. It’s a game we will be expected to win and one we have to win it. If we lose again on Saturday, it really doesn’t look good for us and that’s not being disrespectful to Limavady, it is just the way it is.

“They have struggled the same as us this season but the onus is on us to go out and show that for us it has been a bit of a blip in those few games. We need to get back to performing the way we should be performing.”

McCarter has, for the first time in months, something resembling a full strength squad to select from as the Green and Black seek a second win to start building their season upon.

“It’s a derby and it would be nice to win it but we have to come with the right attitude, we can’t take anything for granted,” added the Derry coach, “I’m not too concerned with Limavady or the results they have been getting, I just want to see us progress and get back to playing like we should be. We have to build a bit of confidence because we have another home game again next Saturday (against CIYMS) so it would be nice to start building confidence over these next few weeks and get a bit of positivity back in the camp.

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McCarter was out of the country for last weekend’s reversal against Ballyclare which, despite defeat, saw some promising passages against a side which has garnered maximum points from every game they’ve played this season and look odds on to top the table.

“Having almost everyone available is a bonus because this is a game we have to win,” he admitted, “I was following last week’s game via the phone for the majority of the 80 minutes. People were texting me when there were scores and I couldn’t really settle all day, I was getting a running commentary via my dad and have since watched a video of it.

“Realistically it was something of a free hit for us. Ballyclare are clearly a very good side, the best team in this division to date by a country mile. In that sense it was more about going out and trying to perform better than we have been doing over recent weeks and from watching the video back, I can see that we definitely did that. Chatting to Coops (Chris Cooper) Logie (Simon Logue) and a few others, they were a lot happier with the attitude and commitment we showed in the game.

“Indeed had we been more clinical at key stages in the match, then the outcome may have been very different because at 21-14 down we missed a couple of very big chances that may have made Ballyclare nervous. No, it was good to get a bit of positivity of performance even if it was ultimately in defeat. The challenge now is to keep improving and that must start this weekend against Limavady.”