With the thunder and lighting from Friday’s win over Waterford barely settling, the League of Ireland champions are back out once more when they take on Derry City at Turners Cross on Bank Holiday Monday afternoon (kick off 3.00pm).
After a second half dismantling of Waterford, which saw the Leesiders snatch two goals in two minutes to run out 3-0 winners in the Munster derby, John Caulfield’s side will be hoping to make it ten home wins from ten with the visit of the Candystripes.
In what could be an invaluable three points in the title race, City could move one point clear at the top with a win over Derry.
Speaking ahead of the game, Caulfield talked up his side’s unbeaten home run and four game winning streak run as he goes in search of his first win over Derry in 12 months.
“The lads are in good form at the moment,” said John Caulfield. “Obviously, we are on a winning streak at the moment and our home form has been excellent. It is another huge game.
"Conor McCormack is suspended and a few of the lads have knocks so, with the quick turnaround, we will just wait to assess it, but I would imagine most of them will be in contention.”
Having already met their northern counterparts once this season in a scoreless stalemate, Caulfield’s side were saved by the post when Ronan Curtis’s effort deflected off the post and turned into Mark McNulty’s hands.
It was a cautious affair which Caulfield was bearing in mind as he prepares for Monday’s tie.
“Derry are dark horses, they have tremendous players. Their form in the last few weeks has been a bit iffy, but we played them in the Brandywell five weeks ago and had a very close match which ended 0-0.
"They create lots of chances, so we must make sure that we give a top performance. I always say, if we do that, then we have a chance of taking the points.”
In team news, in addition to the suspended Conor McCormack, and the long term injured Johnny Dunleavy, Gearóid Morrissey, Alan Bennett and Steven Beattie are all required to be accessed for fitness prior to kick off.
Reeling from Friday’s 2-0 loss to Sligo Rovers, Kenny Shiels and his Red and White Army will be readying themselves once more for the long trip south when they face Cork City for the second time in four weeks.
Addressing the media ahead of the game, Shiels focused on his squad and the recent comings and goings at the Brandywell. Having lost Ronan Curtis to Portsmouth and the release of Dapo Kayode, Shiels gave a positive outlook ahead of the opening up of the summer transfer window.
“We have lost players in the first half of the season but obviously we weren't able to add any replacements until July. We are very close to bringing in three players who will really boost the squad but I don't want to start naming people because that has worked against us in the past,” said Sheils with the loss of Sean Kavanagh to Shamrock Rovers in his mind.
In addition to this, Shiels was beaming with the announcement of the signing of his son Dean Shiels, which he announced will open up new options for his side.
"Dean will sign a one-and-half year deal with us over the next week or so. He will give us good options for a busy second half of the season and will provide that bit of experience we're lacking"
Derry will be traveling to Turners Cross with no new injury concerns and no lingering suspensions.
This is the second meeting between the sides of the season, following from last month’s 0-0 draw at the Brandywell. Kenny Shiels has had one win at Turners Cross in his time at Derry, which was a 2-1 win in the EA Sports Cup in May 2016.
Their last league win at the Cross was in March 2013 when Rory Patterson scored a last minute winner to give the Candystripes a 1-0 win.
City will be in search of their tenth consecutive home win of the season. Their unbeaten home stretch runs back to September 2017 when they drew with Dundalk 1-1.
Cork City 11/2; Draw 7/2; Derry City 13/2.
Cork City 2-1 Derry City
Injured: Johnny Dunleavy.
Doubtful: Gearóid Morrissey, Alan Bennett and Steven Beattie
CITY EDITION | Download and read tomorrow’s issue a day early. Available for only €2.— Cork City FC (@CorkCityFC) June 3, 2018
You can also pick up a physical copy (€3) around Turner’s Cross tomorrow afternoon.