Danny Mullen’s late goal sneaks victory for Derry City over St Pat’s

Home side were fortunate to claim their second home win of the season

Derry City 2 St Patrick’s Athletic 1

Super sub Danny Mullen was the hero at Brandywell when he drove home the winning goal in injury time to break the hearts of St. Patrick’s Athletic after what had been an exciting second half.

Paul McMullan stepped over the ball and with his colleague unmarked on the edge of the penalty area, the striker crashed the ball high into the net.

The finish certainly had the home crowd on their toes but, in truth, the home side were fortunate to claim their second home win of the season.


Two minutes into the second half, St Pat’s hitman Ruairi Keating netted his first goal for his side, a superb strike which certainly brought this game to life after a dull first half.

Having struggled in the opening period, Pat Hoban equalled the scoreline for Derry to provide a lively finish.

Both clubs will now face trips on the road on Monday with Pat’s travelling to Waterford and Derry to Tallaght Stadium.

On a night which saw the Premier Division reduced to just three matches with snow ruling out the fixtures involving Shamrock Rovers and Drogheda and Bohemians and Dundalk in Dublin, both Derry and St Pat’s were keen to make progress on Foyleside.

And with the St Pat’s ticket allocation reduced to just 190 supporters, due to refurbishment at Brandywell, the home faithful remained in full voice. That figure agreed by the FAI following an approach by the home side.

Played in bitterly cold conditions, both sides tested each other over the opening half an hour, neither side managing to test either goalkeeper.

On the team front, Ruaidhri Higgins made four changes from the team which was involved in a drab scoreless result in the Sligo Showgrounds last Saturday, while the visitors made just one change, ex-Derry midfielder Brandon Kavanagh replacing the injured Jack Mulreaney.

Referee Robert Harvey booked Derry striker, Pat Hoban, after the Galway native appeared to haul Chris Forrester back onto his feet after the visiting midfielder attempted to sit on the ground in front of the Derry dugout, the only yellow card of what proved to be a lethargic opening half.

Indeed, Pat’s boss, Jon Daly will probably have been the happier of the managers at the break, the visitors having produced a stubborn defensive performance which kept the home fans surprisingly quiet.

Of the minimal scoring chances that had been created, Hoban failed to take advantage when well placed.

However, St Pat’s stunned the large Derry attendane within two minutes of the second half with a magnificent goal from Ruairi Keating.

Derry’s Ben Doherty appeared to have attempted to head the ball back towards his keeper and having failed to see the St. Pat’s striker race in on the blind side, Keating let fly with a magnificent strike into the top corner of the Derry net, keeper Brian Maher failing to get a touch.

The goal certainly motivated the home lot who began to move the ball around with precision but the Dubliners maintained their solid defensive tactics by continuing to frustrate the home side.

Derry got back on level terms following a corner in the 64th minute when Hoban rose superbly to meet the ball, his effort finding the net much to the delight of the home faithful.

Happy to settle for a share of the spoils, Pats’ Brazilian keeper Marcelo Pitaluga was shown a yellow card for time wasting with 12 minutes remaining.

Derry City: Maher; Boyce, Connolly, McJannet, Doherty; Patching, O’Reilly; McEneff (McMullan, 55), Kelly (Mullan, 81, McEleney, 92), Duffy; Hoban.

St Patrick’s Athletic: Pitaluga; Turner, Redmond, Keely; Bresin, Sjoberg, Kavanagh (McClelland, 70), Forrester, Lennon, Leavy; Keating (C. Kavanagh, 84).

Referee: R. Harvey.

Other results:

Sligo Rovers 0 Shelbourne 1

Galway United 2 Waterford 1