CRUNCH TIE FOR DERRY IN DUNDALK TONIGHT
Derry City face a crunch tie in the Airtricity Premiership tonight when they travel to Oriel Park to take on Dundalk.
Dundalk, managed by former City boss Stephen Kenny, are the league’s “surprise packet” this season and are in third place, only one point behind defending champions Sligo Rovers, in second.
City are currently in fourth position but are 10 points behind Dundalk although they have a game in hand. However, defeat for Declan Devine’s side will almost certainly end their hopes of a place in next season’s Europa Cup.
Normally, the top three in the table earn European places but that will stretch to fourth spot if either Sligo or Dundalk win the FAI Cup.
The cup semi-finals see Sligo face fifth-placed Shamrock Rovers with Dundalk taking on Louth neighbours Drogheda United.
After a good start to the season, City have “gone off the rails” and are finding victories difficult to come by and they are in danger of being caught for fourth spot by Shamrock Rovers.
The Dublin club are currently three points behind the Brandywell club.
But such has been Derry’s recent slide, with five defeats in their last seven games, that they may well be looking over their shoulder at the Hoops for the remainder of the campaign.
Derry’s form since the mid-season break in June has been dismal with their league record since then four wins and seven losses.
The Derry boss will have to do without the services of defender Ryan McBride who misses tonight’s game as a result of his dismissal in the 2-0 defeat by Bohemians on Friday night last.