Kenny relief at fine Finn-ish

Stephen Kenny will live to fight another day as Rovers boss having recorded a vital victory at his former stomping ground last night.

And while it was a narrow yet deserved win for the Dubliners, Derry defender Ryan McBride could have punished his former boss had he netted a header in the 93rd minute.

In fact, Derry could have shared the spoils after Rovers seemed to take their foot off the pedal after breaking the deadlock in the 53rd minute.

The Brandywell side huffed and puffed to the end but failed to seriously penetrate a resolute and robust Shams defence.

Having received the dreaded vote of confidence from his board of directors on Thursday night, Kenny will face another test of character next weekend with the visit of league leaders Sligo Rovers to Tallaght.

The last time Derry lost four consecutive games on home soil dates back to 1991, which signalled the end of Jim McLaughlin’s reign at his home town club.

Rovers dominated thescoring chances throughout the first-half and striker Gary Twigg wasted a great chance on 22 minutes.

A wayward pass by full-back Stephen McCaffrey was intercepted by the Scot but with just the keeper to beat Twigg directed his shot wide.

Derry’s injury jinx then struck again with the loss of winger Patrick McEleney, who had to be stretchered off having sustained a twisted knee in the 33rd minute.

Gary McCabe went close in the 44th minute when another effort crashed off the body of a Derry defender at the expense of a corner.

Delighted not to have conceded before the break, Derry created their best scoring chance three minutes into the second-half.

Ruaidhri Higgins gained possession on the edge of the 18-yard line and his curling shot saw Rovers keeper Oscar Jansson produce a superb save, touching the ball over his crossbar.

However, the visitors took the wind out of the Derry sails in the 53rd minute with a goal.

The hard-working Ronan Finn was allowed time and his right-foot shot crashed off the underside of the crossbar before finding the net.

Derry pushed forward and McBride could have haunted Kenny deep into injury-time when he met Dermot McCaffrey’s corner, but the ball flew agonisingly wide of the upright.

DERRY CITY: Doherty; Madden, McBride, S McEleney, McCaffrey; P McEleney (McNamee 33, McCallion 90), Higgins, Molloy, McLaughlin; Morrison (Farren 72), McDaid.

SHAMROCK ROVERS: Jansson; Sullivan, Sives, Hawkins, Powell; Turner, Finn, Rice, McCabe (McCormack 75); Kavanagh (Brennan 59), Twigg (Kilduff 78).

Referee: D Tomney (Dublin).

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