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Evan McLaughlin hailed ‘real talent’ as debut goal helps Derry City end winless home run

Derry City 2 Waterford 0

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Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins has praised his teenage debutant. Pic: INPHO/Ciaran Culligan

Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins has praised his teenage debutant. Pic: INPHO/Ciaran Culligan

©INPHO/Ciaran Culligan

Derry City’s Joe Thomson . Credit: INPHO/Lorcan Doherty

Derry City’s Joe Thomson . Credit: INPHO/Lorcan Doherty

©INPHO/Lorcan Doherty

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Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins has praised his teenage debutant. Pic: INPHO/Ciaran Culligan

Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins said teenage debutant Evan McLaughlin should be ‘proud’ of his efforts as a debut goal helped seal a first home win of the season.

McLaughlin, 18, and Joe Thomson were on target as the Candystripes beat Waterford 2-0, securing victory at the Brandywell at the 10th time of asking.

It was a dream debut for the teenager and his boss was understandably delighted with his efforts.

"I'm very pleased with the performance - for large periods of the game we were good, we created chances and I feel we in control,” Higgins told the BBC.

"Evan just caught the eye from day one for me. I think he's a real talent and he's taken his opportunity. He should be proud of his debut display.

"(The winless home run) is gone, thank goodness. I'm delighted and the players are delighted.”

Higgins also handed debuts to new signings Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe and Jamie McGonigle, the latter appearing as a second-half substitute.

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Derry were always on the front foot and the goal they deserved arrived just three minutes before the break and what a moment it was for McLaughlin.

Cameron McJannet spread play to the left wing where Danny Lafferty took the ball in his stride and crossed into McLaughlin, who somehow managed to keep the ball under his control under pressure, before his shot took a deflection on its way in to give the Candystripes the lead.

City continued to control the game after the break and they doubled their lead on 52 minutes when Ronan Boyce fed Joe Thomson into the area, who curled a brilliant effort into the top corner.

McGonigle came on for an earlier than expected debut just past the hour mark, the substitution an enforced one for what looked like a hamstring injury to Junior.

DERRY CITY: Gartside, Coll, Toal, McJannett, Boyce, Lafferty, Harkin, Thomson (Malone 84), McLaughlin (Cole 73), Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe (McGonigle 63), Akintunde (Fitzgerald 72).

WATERFORD: Murphy, Stafford, Power (Collins 82), Evans, Ferguson, Griffin, Hutchison (Kavanagh 67), O’Keefe, Martin, Tshipamba (Sobowale 45), Mutswunguma.

Referee: Paul McLaughlin

Man of the match: Evan McLaughlin

Match rating: 6/10


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