There was no dream return to the top flight for Galway United as Derry City took all three points in Eamonn Deacy Park last night.
The visitors had a poor record away from home last season, winning just three of their 16 games on the road, and they went behind in the 19th minute.
Ryan Connolly swung in a corner from the right, and Sam Oji — one of three players making their debut for the home side — met it at the back post with a bullet-like header which crashed to the net.
United almost added a second in comic circumstances in the 37th minute when Shane McEleney, in trying to clear the ball sliced his kick over keeper Ger Doherty and the ball bounced inches wide.
The visitors were much improved in the second-half, and they got back on level terms on the hour mark when Patrick McEleney dug out a cross from the byline on the right, and as a clutch of United defenders left the ball for each other, Sean Houston pounced to shoot back across goal and inside the post.
The winner came eight minutes from time, and McEleney was again the provider. His cross from the left was met by Ryan Curran, who flung himself at the cross and headed past United keeper Connor Gleeson.
Gleeson; Horgan, Oji, O’Connell (Molloy 85), Walsh; Shanahan, Sinnott, O’Leary, Keegan; Connolly; Curran (Cunningham 77).
Doherty; S Kelly, S McEleney, Barry, Jarvis; McNamee, Houston, Lowry, Daniels; P McEleney; Curran.
P McLoughlin (Donegal).