Patrick McClean set to be rewarded for Derry City scoring heroics
Derry City hope to extend their impressive unbeaten run to eight games tonight when they face Sligo Rovers in the EA Sports League Cup.
Tonight's game, the second of three in seven days for Derry, will see City boss Kenny Shiels ring the changes due to a mini-injury crisis which has hit his squad in recent days.
Saturday's game at Longford saw the Candystripes come from behind to pick up a valuable point, but it came at a cost with defender Aaron Barry, and midfielders Harry Monaghan and Keith Ward all picking up injuries. Monaghan has been ruled out for six weeks with a knee injury.
It could well mean a first start of the season for Patrick McClean, whose wonder-goal from 35 yards salvaged a point at Longford, after replacing Barry.
With City also facing Bohemians on Friday, Shiels is eager to manage his squad effectively and with Gareth McGlynn also struggling with a hamstring strain, Josh Daniels could well come back into contention.
"The injuries are mounting up," said Shiels.
"The boys are going to be tired having to play on Tuesday again. We have a tough game on Tuesday night against a very good Sligo Rovers team.
"It's a very important game, we have to treat the tournament with respect and that's what we'll be doing."
Derry City are unbeaten since losing to Finn Harps on the opening day of the season, a record which is in stark contrast to that of Sligo Rovers, who remain the only team in the League of Ireland yet to pick up a win in this campaign.
Despite Sligo's poor run, the Candystripes are expecting a tough game against the Bit O'Red, with defender Dean Jarvis admitting that tonight's contest could be too close to call.
"We look forward to every game that we go into," he said.
"We know we have a relatively small squad and we want to keep the momentum going.
"We haven't lost in seven games so we're on a good run and that has built confidence.
"We played them in pre-season and they are a good young team who like to play football, but that could suit us because I think we play better against the teams who like to play."