McDaid keeps Derry title hopes alive
Limerick FC 0 Derry City 1
Derry City kept their title hopes alive with victory over Limerick to climb into third position of the league.
David McDaid was the Candystripes hero as he sprung from the bench to hand his side all three points.
Limerick enjoyed the majority of the first-half possession but it was Derry who squandered a host of chances through Michael Rafter, Michael Duffy and a brilliant acrobatic effort from Ruaidhri Higgins which just flashed wide.
Derry showed early signs of a European hangover, and were quite happy to sit back and hit Limerick on the counter-attack.
Rafter had a gilt-edged opportunity inside five minutes but his shot went harmlessly over the crossbar – a miss that seemed to set the tone for the striker's evening in front of goal.
The Shannonsiders were denied a strong penalty claim midway through the half when Shaun Kelly went down in the area but referee Paul McLaughlin waved their pleas away.
But five minutes before the break, McLoughlin had no hesitation in pointing to the spot when Simon Madden was tripped by Dave O'Leary. But Rafter saw his tame effort easily saved by Barry Ryan.
The home side's best chance of the game fell to Joe Gamble but he somehow failed to find the back of the net from just a couple of yards out.
Five minutes later, Derry grabbed the winner.
Robbie Williams got caught under a high ball which allowed McDaid in behind him, and the striker calmly slotted passed Ryan.
And McDaid didn't underplay the importance of his side's win, saying: "That was our most important game of the season.
"We knew we had to win. We created a lot of chances and fortunately I took one.
"It was a big downer to be put on the bench but hopefully this gives the manager some food for thought for Friday night".
Limerick FC – Ryan; Kelly, O'Callaghan, Williams, Tracy; Bradley, Gamble (Feeney 85), O'Leary (Sheedy 79); Bossekota (Nzuzi, 87) Curran, Galbraith.
Derry City – Doherty; Madden, Deery, McBride, Osbourne; P McEleney, Kavanagh (Patterson 72), Higgins , McNamee (Houston 65); Duffy, Rafter (McDaid 52).
Ref – P McLoughlin (Monaghan).