Derry's Devine the latest League of Ireland manager to depart

Declan Devine has lost his job after poor Derry start to season
Derry's Devine the latest League of Ireland manager to depart

Declan Devine

Declan Devine has become the second managerial casualty of the new League of Ireland season, losing his job at Derry City as the side sit bottom of the table after six games.

It marks the end of Devine’s second stint at the helm, having managed his local club from January 2012 till October 2013.

The 47-year-old was reappointed in November 2018, succeeding Kenny Shields, and led the Candystripes into Europe with a fourth-place finish in his first season.

However, the shortened 2020 campaign proved a struggle, seeing Derry finishing seventh after teetering on the brink of a relegation battle.

Club owner Philip O’Doherty promised an overhaul during the pre-season and after some backroom changes, an emphasis was placed on recruiting local players.

That their marquee loan acquisition, Manchester City scholar of the year Joe Hodge, has so far been unavailable due to a back injury has been a blow to their early-season ambitions.

Derry have yet to win this term, losing their opening four games followed by home draws against Drogheda United and Dundalk.

"Derry City FC and Declan Devine have parted company by mutual consent," read a statement from Chairman Mr O'Doherty, Derry’s dedicated benefactor.

"The board wish to thank Declan for his service to the club and wish him well for the future."

City travel the short distance to face joint league leaders Sligo Rovers in their next game on Saturday evening.

Last weekend, Dundalk’s manager Shane Keegan and coach Filippo Giovagnoli resigned following a similarly disappointing start to the season.

Shamrock Rovers manager Stephen Bradley expressed his surprise at the news of Devine’s departure.

“It’s not nice to see anyone lose their job,” said Bradley, whose side won 2-0 at the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium 10 days ago.

“From watching their games beforehand and when we played them up there, you get a feel for a team and its players," added Bradley, speaking ahead of Rovers' derby with Bohemians at Tallaght Stadium tomorrow night.

“You know if the dressing room is not there with the manager and I felt anything but that.

“I felt they worked extremely hard for the manager and I left there thinking they were still with him. So I didn’t think there would be a change.

“I know results haven’t gone their way in the early part of the season, but I didn’t think there would be a change in the early part of the season.

“But when you’re not in it, it’s hard to know what’s going on.”

 

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