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Devine hopes it's third time's a charm for Derry in Pat's test

St Pat's Ath v Derry City, SSE Airtricity Premier Division, Richmond Park, Tonight, 7.45pm

Injury woes: Derry City manager Declan Devine
Injury woes: Derry City manager Declan Devine

By Eoin Wilson

Derry City face St Patrick's Athletic for the third time in five weeks tonight, with both teams desperate to get back to winning ways.

Declan Devine's side have drawn their last three games, the most recent at Sligo Showgrounds last Saturday, and it was a frustrating one for Devine and his players.

"I think we can play much better than we did but when I look back on it we have defended really well and we've worked extremely hard," he said.

"Sligo have lost one out of nine now and we're disappointed having not won the game, so that shows you where we are coming from in the short period of time we have been together as a new group."

Both Derry and Pat's are very familiar with each other, but Devine dismissed suggestions that playing Harry Kenny's side with such regularity would make it more difficult for his team.

"It might make it harder for them too," he said.

"I think they will show us a lot of respect and I think we'll show them a lot of respect. St Pat's are a very good side but we just have to control the controllables. Darren Cole limped through the last 30 minutes of the Sligo game and we had Eoghan Stokes come off injured, so we have a few bodies that are struggling.

"Again, that presents opportunities for others and we have to make sure we go to Dublin as fresh as possible.

"I think whatever has happened in the previous two games is out the window because whoever players the best will win the game.

"It is a very difficult game for us, there's no doubt about it.

"St Pat's have a day extra recovery on us, as will Finn Harps come Friday, so it's just backs to the walls again.

"We have got to take care of our side of things and if we do that I have every confidence in the group of players that we can do quite well."

Meanwhile, Pat's manager Harry Kenny is hoping to finally get back to winning ways against the Candystripes.

"We had a good draw against Bohs last Friday and now we have this game against Derry following on from it quickly," said Kenny,

"Derry were tough opponents recently and we know that we need to be at it to compete with them.

"That said though, I thought we played well up there and got a good point in Derry thanks to a great goal from Lee Desmond.

"If we can show the same levels of performance from that night, and of what we showed against Bohs, I'd be hopeful we can pick up a result."

Last night: Dundalk 2 Bohemians 1; UCD 0 Cork City 1; Finn Harps 0 Shamrock Rovers 3

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