Derry City confirm they will start 2017 campaign in Donegal

Thu, Dec 08 2016

The Brandywell will be unavailable for the entire season as it undergoes extensive renovation. Credit: Extratime Team

Derry City have confirmed that they will start their 2017 SSE Airtricity Premier Division campaign at Maginn Park in Buncrana in Donegal.

 

The Candystripes have been looking for a new ground for a number of months following the planned action to close down the Brandywell in order for it to be redeveloped.

 

This means the northwest outfit will be without a true home advantage next season as the redevelopment is expected to last for the entire 2017 league campaign, with the 2018 season expected to see Derry return to the famous Brandywell.

 

The club have confirmed they are exploring all other options available to them in order to find another stadium for the latter part of the season, but if no other options are viable then Maginn Park will be home away from home for Derry and their fans for the entire season.

 

Work on the stadium is already underway and 220 seats, which have been removed from the old Brandywell stadium, are being installed at the small venue in County Donegal.

 

As well as hundreds of seats being installed, Maginn will also need other improvements, such as emergency lighting and toilet faculties, in order for the ground to meet FAI Premier Division stadium standards.

 

The club are also still actively looking for another stadium for their Europa League ties as Maginn Park does not meet UEFA requirements, so Sligo Rovers' Showgrounds is likely to be the temporary European stomping ground for the Candystripes next season.

 

Season tickets for the 2017 campaign go on-sale next week and the club intend to provide transport to the games.

 

The moves means two Premier Division teams will play their home games in County Donegal, with fierce rivals Finn Harps playing in Ballybofey.

 

A statement from a club spokesperson read: “Derry City have let it be known that the initial home games of next season will be played in Maginn Park, Buncrana.

 

“They are continuing to explore other options for later in the season but, failing any positive outcomes to those explorations, Maginn Park will facilitate the rest of the games.

 

“The only difficulty presented by the Buncrana venue is one of capacity. For the greater number of matches, the club believes that the capacity will meet the demand but they realise that in some matches, capacity will be limited.

 

“The club are said to be very pleased and grateful to the management of Maginn for the welcome and the flexibility they have shown to Derry City.

 

“The club is also exploring ways of providing public transport to and from Buncrana for supporters who don’t drive or who prefer to go to matches with groups of friends.

 

“The club have also made it known that season tickets will go on sale next week.”