Perth Happy With His Side’s Return To Action Against Derry City
Dundalk manager Vinny Perth left Oriel Park a very happy man on Friday after watching his side return to action with an impressive display against Derry City that afternoon.
Walter Figueira gave the Candystripes an early lead but the Lilywhites controlled things after that and passed up a number of chances before Jordan Flores added to his personal collection of wonder goals with a stunning equaliser in the 55th minute.
Perth gave 19 players a run out ahead of the league resumption at the end of the month and speaking to dundalkfc.com, he highlighted the contribution of three new arrivals.
“I think Stefan Colovic, Will Patching and Darragh Leahy, three ‘newbies’ for want of a better word, were really impressive,” he said. “They have not played a lot of football for us and they’re still finding their feet so I’m really happy with how they played.
“I think Derry were in our box once of real note,” he added. “They scored from it and it was just like a league game after that, they sat in and protected it. We have to get used to teams coming here and sitting in. We’ve done a lot of work on that and I think it showed on the pitch today.
“We had a huge amount of possession, we used different systems of play that worked but goals change games and we needed that equaliser. When we did score, we made four changes, and the game sort of petered out but I’m very happy with how it went.”
It was the first time that Dundalk have played a ‘competitive’ game in front of no supporters and Perth said it took his players a little bit of time to adapt to the strange surroundings.
“It took us five or 10 minutes to get our rhythm and that’s from getting used to having nobody in the ground. with 15 minutes to go, I said to the bench that if we had the shed behind us you’d fancy us to win the game but it’s something we will just have to get used to and it’s going to be the same for everyone.
“It’s great to have football back,” he added. “I’m really happy with where we are as a squad and as a team and I’m looking forward to what’s ahead.”
Next up for the Lilywhites is another home game against Bohemians on Tuesday night before Drogheda United make the short trip to Oriel Park 72 hours later. Both games will be played behind closed doors.
DUNDALK FC: Gary Rogers; Sean Gannon (Cameron Dummigan 75), Daniel Cleary, Andy Boyle, Darragh Leahy (Dane Massey 61); Chris Shields (Greg Sloggett 61), Jordan Flores (Joshua Gatt 75); Stefan Colovic (Daniel Kelly 61), Will Patching (John Mountney 66), Michael Duffy (Nathan Oduwa 61); Patrick Hoban (Georgie Kelly 66). Subs not used: Aaron McCarey (GK), Jimmy Corcoran (GK), Lido Lotefa, Taner Dogan, Andrew Quinn.
DERRY CITY: Peter Cherrie; Conor McCormack, Eoin Toal, Ally Gilchrist (Mark McChrystal 72), Ciaran Coll (Colm Horgan HT); Ciaron Harkin (Ronan Boyce 80), Jack Malone, Conor Clifford, Joe Thompson (Gerardo Bruna 65); Joe Keaveny (Patrick Ferry HT), Walter Figueira (Michael Harris 80).
REFEREE: Paul McLaughlin.
Pictures: Ciaran Culligan