Click to view a gallery of photos from Fergus McNally of tonight's game
Goals from Gareth McGlynn and Daniel Lafferty gave Derry City their first win since winning promotion back to the Premier Division as they overcame UCD.
The match opened with a fast pace, but Derry looked more dangerous from the outset. They attacked in waves, and found the net after eight minutes through Gareth McGlynn. Patrick McEleney made the goal, after finding McGlynn open in the box with a superb pass. The recently-returned midfielder only had to place the ball past the helpless Ger Barron for 1-0.
UCD went on the attack straight after the goal, but their sloppy passing was their undoing. Attack after attack broke down in the final third of the pitch as UCD opted to play ineffective long balls to Cillian Morrison and Graham Rusk. But Derry were unable to take advantage, and were guilty themselves of inaccurate passing at times.
College had their best chance of the half on 31 minutes, when after a period of UCD pressure Sean Harding played a good ball in to Graham Rusk. Rusk's diving header fell just wide, though. Neither side really had a clear cut chance before half time, with Robbie Creevy's whipped cross the closest thing on 40 minutes.
The Candystripes went into the break 1-0 up, and continued their form in the opening minutes of the second half. Eamon Zayed forced Ger Barron to parry the ball over the bar on 47 minutes following a rasping shot from 25 yards. Stephen McLaughlin had a chance four minutes later, but his feeble shot after a Derry free in was easily saved.
Gradually, UCD began to keep the ball better though and the Students were able to come into the match more as the second half progressed. They still looked a little toothless in the final third of the pitch though, and were unable to get any shots on goal despite good build-up play from Ciaran Nangle and Sean Harding in particular.
Eamon Zayed again threatened for Derry on 69 minutes - knocking the ball down for Gareth McGlynn following a good ball into Zayed from Patrick McEleney. McGlynn somehow shot wide right in front of goal though. Zayed was back two minutes later, heading just over the bar after a Stephen McLaughlin.
UCD had another close shave a minute after that, with Stewart Greacen heading the ball against the upright from a corner. The Students came closest to a goal on 75 minutes, with a goalmouth scramble ensuing after a corner. UCD still couldn't finish though, and the ball was eventually hoofed clear. Daniel Lafferty broke away following the clearance, and looked like he was clear on goal but for a timely intervention from Yael Haro. Substitute Darren Meenan had another chance for the home side on 77 minutes, shooting wide from a free which looked more like a cross.
The final ten minutes saw UCD try to find an equaliser, but again they were sorely lacking up front. Derry could have scored again in the closing minutes, with Stephen McLaughlin hitting the upright after he broke away. The Candystripes did double their lead through Daniel Lafferty on 87 minutes, with a neat finish after dire UCD defending. The little wind that was in UCD's sails went away with that goal, and Derry were able to comfortably see the rest of the match out.
UCD: Ger Barron; Sean Harding, Yael Haro, Michael Leahy, Ciaran Nangle; Paul O'Conor, Paul Corry, Robbie Creevy, Dean Marshall (Darren Meenan 75); Graham Rusk, Cillian Morrison (Robbie Benson 66).
Subs Not Used: Mark McGinley, Tomas Boyle, Mark Langtry, Daniel Ledwith, Ger O'Callaghan.
Derry City: Ger Doherty; Eddie McCallion, Stewart Greacen, Shane McEleney, Daniel Lafferty; Gareth McGlynn, Barry Molloy, Ruari Harkin, Patrick McEleney (David McDaid '89); Stephen McLaughlin, Eamon Zayed.
Subs Not Used: Eugene Ferry, Emmet Friars, Ryan McBride, Michael McCrudden, Thomas McBride, James Henry.
Bookings: McLaughlin (35), S McEleney (57), Greacen (77).
Referee: Graham Kelly (Cork).
Attendance: 550 (estimate).
Extratime.ie Man of the Match: Patrick McEleney.