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Timlin eager to ruin visit of former Derry team-mates

By Eoin Wilson

Published 06/05/2016

Top form: Mark Timlin has been impressed by his old side Derry
Top form: Mark Timlin has been impressed by his old side Derry

Mark Timlin comes up against Derry City tonight for the first time since leaving the Brandywell.

The winger was Derry's top scorer last season with 11 goals and his departure at the end of last year was seen as a huge blow for the Candystripes.

But under Kenny Shiels, Derry have enjoyed something of a renaissance as they sit third in the Premier Division having also qualified for the semi-finals of this season's EA Sports League Cup, and even Timlin has taken note.

"It's hard not to pay attention to them as they've started so well," he admitted. "I think the new manager has come in and given everyone a clean slate and instilled confidence in the squad that might have been missing in previous seasons.

"They're full of confidence whereas we haven't really started yet. I think with the quality in our squad it's about time we started to move up the table so hopefully we can start."

The Dubliners have been hit and miss so far this season, but victory tonight would leave them just one point behind Shiels' team. However, the Derry boss is just as eager for the three points, revealing a huge incentive for his squad.

"What we have to do is win at St Pats and that would open things up a bit for us," he explained. "There is a four-point difference between us at present so if we could win, it would open up a seven-point gap which would be tremendous.

Shiels was speaking after his team came from behind to defeat Cork City in extra-time in Monday's League Cup semi-final clash at Turner's Cross, a result that sets up a last-four tie with First Division leaders Limerick at the Brandywell on August 1.

"The performance was brilliant to match the result so that was very pleasing. We did really well and I'm pleased with our possession level, which is improving all the time," he added.

"It was a great statement from the players because their character shone through. Most of the time when a team loses after a winning streak, they usually go off the boil, but I thought we were excellent.

"I'm delighted at the effort, commitment and quality because it was all there."

St Pat's Athletic

Derry City

Airtricity Premier Division:

Richmond Park, 7.45pm

Belfast Telegraph

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