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Devine bemoans late mistakes as Candystripes are held

Waterford 2 Derry City 2

Late drama: Darren Cole’s goal was not enough for Derry
Late drama: Darren Cole’s goal was not enough for Derry

By Eoin Wilson

Declan Devine could not hide his disappointment after Derry City conceded a 92nd minute penalty to deny them victory at Waterford.

The Candystripes thought they had stolen all three points after Darren Cole curled the ball into the net on 88 minutes but they failed to hold on, with Shane Duggan scoring a last gasp penalty for the hosts.

"We have come away from Waterford with a point from a very difficult game," Devine said.

"We have got to learn from our mistakes. We have to learn that, when we have possession of the ball with 40 seconds to go, we keep possession of the ball in the final third. We gave the ball away too cheaply, they have counter-attacked us and we made a bad decision in the penalty box because it is a penalty.

"It's disappointing, but it shows you how far this young team has come whenever we're leaving here with a point and we're disappointed."

Derry were on top early on and Waterford needed Georgie Poynton to save them on 15 minutes as the visitors cut through the Blues' defence brilliantly, McNamee picking out the run of Jamie McDonagh, whose pull back was perfect for David Parkhouse, only for Poynton to hook the ball off the line.

The same combination carved the Waterford defence open again on the half hour but still Derry couldn't take the chance.

Darren McNamee's quick pass set McDonagh away and his delivery across the face of goal just needed to be tapped in by Parkhouse, but he somehow missed, barely getting a touch on the ball which trickled just wide of a very open goal.

The visitors came close again when McDonagh was found in space, but his spectacular effort flew just past the upright.

The goal that City were threatening finally arrived just three minutes before the break and it was no surprise that it came from the right hand side.

Waterford had not learned their lesson as McDonagh breezed into the penalty area and, at the third time of asking, Parkhouse swept home his low cross, smashing in his fifth goal of the season.

Home boss Alan Reynolds responded to a poor first half display from his team by introducing striker Izzy Akinade at the start of the second half, withdrawing Karolis Chvedukas in an attempt to shake things up in attack.

Shake it up they did as Waterford equalised on 62 minutes.

Evan Tweed lost the ball in midfield and Bastien Hery played a superb pass through the heart of the City defence from his own half, inviting Akinade to race onto it, outpace the defence and hook it past Peter Cherrie and into the net.

Derry thought they had won it with just two minutes remaining when Cole, moved into a central midfield position, curled an absolute beauty over the head of Matthew Connor from 25 yards.

But Derry could not hold on and they conceded their fifth penalty of the season in added time.

After McDonagh was penalised for a challenge on Aaron Drinnan, Duggan stepped up and saved Waterford with a well struck penalty to seal a point at the very end of an entertaining game at the RSC.

WATERFORD: Connor, Feely, Duggan, Chvedukas (Akinade, 46 mins), Lunney, Drinan, Twine (Galvin, 74 mins), Elbouzedi, Delaney, Poynton, Hery (Simpson, 62 mins).

DERRY: Cherrie, Coll, Toal, Kerr (McClean, 79 mins), Cole, Sloggett, Bruna (Tweed, 60 mins), McNamee, McDonagh, Ogedi-Uzokwe, Parkhouse (Stokes, 82 mins).

Referee: Tomas Connolly

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