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We put up a brave fight, says Paddy Kavanagh

By Eoin Wilson

Paddy Kavanagh has insisted that Derry City players can hold their heads high despite their elimination from the Europa League.

The Candystripes lost 3-0 on the night and 7-2 overall despite the brave efforts of the Derry players in both legs.

Hopes of a stunning European upset were ended by three second half goals for the Turks, but Kavanagh was far from downhearted by the final outcome.

"We were beaten by a very good side but the lads put it up to them, particularly in the first half and some of our play was really good," he said.

"We stood toe to toe with them at times and stuck to our game plan so we should take the positives out of it. At the end of the day, Derry City aren't going to win the Europa League so we have to take the positives out of it."

City needed at least two goals on the night to cause an upset but they failed to threaten consistently, two efforts from Ruaidhri Higgins all the hosts had to show for their efforts.

The first Trabzonspor goal from Paolo Henrique ultimately ended the tie overall and Kavanagh admitted that Derry were struggling from that moment on.

"Once we conceded the first goal we were chasing the game," he said.

"We had to commit players forward to try and get back in the game, and teams of that calibre are obviously going to take their chances when they come.

"The final score was flattering because we battled hard and we played well but we've just got caught out.

"But overall we can hold our head high.

"I've played in Europe before but some of the lads are experiencing it for the first time.

"I'm extremely proud of everyone of them because they tried to play against a really good side that will likely go on and progress to the group stages of that competition," he concluded.

Belfast Telegraph


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