Belfast Telegraph

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Shiels hopes record at Bohs can help turn tide

 

By Eoin Wilson

Kenny Shiels is hoping to maintain his 100% record against Bohemians at Dalymount Park tonight.

The Derry City boss has won nine consecutive games against Bohemians since taking over at the Brandywell in 2016, five of which have come in Dublin.

City travelled to Dalymount back in February desperate for a victory after losing their opening two games of the season, and they left victorious thanks to a goal from Ronan Curtis and a late penalty save from Gerard Doherty.

Now the Candystripes are in dire straits again, having picked up just four points in the past nine games, and Shiels admits that nothing but a win will do.

"We need to be winning these games," he admitted. "It's a tough game. They will be up for it because of that record, and we just have to negotiate ways to try and get a result and get ourselves back up and running.

"We've a good record there but we know how intimidating it can be. They have Dinny Corcoran back in the team again - he gives them extra presence - and they are definitely a tough nut to crack."

City's defensive record of later has been nothing short of woeful, conceding 19 goals in the last 5 games.

The defending in their defeat to Cork City on Monday past was particularly shambolic and Shiels admits that the players have been working on their defending in training this week.

"Defensively we're trying to work on things to improve that," he explained. "It's not easy. A lot of things we did worked like putting Darren Cole in there which helped us a lot.

"He had a magnificent game, as did Jamie McDonagh at right back who also had a magnificent game.

"That helped us and gave us a bit of impetus going forward and we had good depth in midfield but we lost the game still. But there were good things that came out of it."

City have been boosted ahead of tonight's game with the news that midfielder Nicky Low has committed to the club until the end of the season.

In a month of departures at the Brandywell, Low's decision to stay was met with as much relief as anything else after the midfielder had been strongly linked with a move away following the end of his contract at Dundee.

And, despite admitting that other clubs were interested, Low admitted that it was never in his plans to leave the Candystripes.

"People had seen my contract was up so some people got in touch with my agent just to see what my plans were," he said.

"He kept me in the loop but I knew deep down that this is where I wanted to stay until the end of the season. It's no secret that I enjoy it here and for me I think it was an easy decision. I love being here, and I enjoy playing for Derry City."

Both Low and defender Conor McDermott, who sat out the defeat at Turners Cross on Monday, are back in contention for a starting role in tonight's must-win game.

Bohemians vs Derry City

SSE Airtricity Premier Division

Dalymount Park, Tonight, 7.45pm

Belfast Telegraph

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