Belfast Telegraph

Devine backing Derry to kick off a hectic week by tasting away joy

Declan Devine
Declan Devine

By Eoin Wilson

It is feast or famine for Derry City, who face a hectic schedule of three games in a week - beginning with a trip to Turners Cross and Cork City tonight.

The Candystripes have played just one competitive fixture in the last month, a 2-2 draw with Shamrock Rovers at Tallaght at the start of June, but they are straight back in at the deep end starting with the journey to Cork, which is followed by a trip to Bohemians on Monday and Dundalk at the Brandywell next Friday.

"It's absolutely crazy but it is what it is," manager Declan Devine said.

"We've had one game in five weeks but now we're expected to travel 900 miles in three days. We knew that was coming so ultimately we have to look forward to the games.

"These are two great places to play. The players have been magnificent in the opening period of the season and we're really looking forward to going to Turners Cross."

Devine's team have lost just twice in 11 games on the road this season and that, the manager insists, is testament to his players.

"Our away form this year has been fantastic," he continued. "We've gone to very difficult venues including Turners Cross earlier in the season, where we got a draw. We were two down in our last game in Tallaght and got back to 2-2.

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"Cork are a very good side; there was nothing between us up here and nothing between us down there so we'll have to be on top of our game to get something."

Devine revealed that while Michael McCrudden is back in training, he will not be rushed back into action. He has been out since March with a foot injury.

"Michael trained a couple of times this week which is great but we have to be very careful," he explained. "We can't rush him back. He took part in a couple of training sessions and did well.

"Michael has been sensational since he's been injured, his work ethic, how he has gone about his job on a daily basis. I'm looking forward to Michael coming back."

Patrick McClean is struggling to recover from a thigh injury, while uncertainty surrounds Darren Cole due to a knee problem.

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