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Beaten Derry's Euro hopes go down to the wire

Derry City 1 St Pat's Athletic 3

Clinical edge: James Doona made a big impact for St Pat’s
Clinical edge: James Doona made a big impact for St Pat’s

By Eoin Wilson

Derry City will have to wait until Friday if they are to secure European football for next season after St Patrick's Athletic stunned them at the Brandywell.

Declan Devine's team needed just one point to secure Europa League football, but it wasn't to be as two late goals for Pat's substitute James Doona stole the points to keep the Dubliners' own hopes of European football alive.

The game never really got going until the second half when Derry got the goal the contest desperately needed. Ciaron Harkin's ball over the top caught St Pat's sleeping and three Derry players raced clear.

Ciaran Coll raced into the area and, as Brendan Clarke came out to narrow the angle, he simply rolled the ball across the face of goal for David Parkhouse to slot home his 19th goal of the season.

The goal brought some swagger into Derry's play for the first time and they broke at pace again with Pat's players chasing shadows soon after. Barry McNamee sent Parkhouse down the left and, when the striker turned inside, he picked out the run of Greg Sloggett, whose cross into the area was met by Jamie McDonagh - but he headed five yards off target.

The game was now more open and it did not take St Pat's long to level the game when Ian Bermingham's shot deflected kindly into the path of Chris Forrester, who turned and fired low past Peter Cherrie to make it 1-1.

The Brandywell was stunned into silence in the closing stages as St Pat's scored two goals in three minutes to seal the win.

Substitute Doona, on the pitch a matter of moments, raced clear of the Derry defence and sent the ball past Cherrie.

Derry tried hard to respond but they were rocked again when Pat's broke after Darren McCauley lost the ball in an advanced position, and Jake Walker picked out Doona, who got in behind again and slotted the ball past Cherrie to seal the win for the visitors.

DERRY CITY: Cherrie, Gillespie (McCauley 63), Toal, Gilchrist, Coll, Harkin (McCrudden 82), McNamee (Bruna 76), Sloggett, McDonagh, Ogedi-Uzokwe, Parkhouse.

ST. PATRICK'S ATHLETIC: Clarke, Kelly, Clarke, Bermingham, Coleman (Clifford 60), Desmond, Markey (Doona 76), Forrester, Lennon, Hale, Shaw (Chambers 68).

Referee: Paul McLaughlin

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