Odhrán Crumley reports from the Brandywell
Stalemate is the word used to describe a game that ends in a draw. Tonight’s game at the Brandywell exemplified that.
Despite that both sides had chances, Rory Patterson coming close for Derry while Graham Burke hit the post for Rovers.
Danny Carr caused the Derry defence real problems early in with his pace in behind.
The first half chance of the game saw Carr dance past two men before attempting to square the ball only for Eoin Toal to clear the danger.
Burke had the first shot of the game but his weak effort rolled into the hands of Gerard Doherty.
Jamie McDonagh started well for the home side. Aaron McEneff played a sublime cross-field ball which was taken down by the chest of McDonagh but the cross was easily cleared.
McDonagh, again, minutes later showed real pace to beat Roberto Lopes up the right.
His cross met the front post run of Patterson, who sent the ball towards the goal, only for it to tail inches wide of the post.
As the half ran on neither side could really get on top for a sustained period of time.
Aaron Bolger had a half volleyed effort saved by Doherty before Rory Hale miscued an effort from 25 yards that sailed high over the bar.
Derry City lost the influential Ronan Curtis on the half-hour to a head injury after a clash in the air.
Blood came from Curtis’ head and he returned to the action for a short period before being withdrawn.
The game teetered towards half time and the score remained as it began: 0-0.
Early in the second half, Carr got in behind the Derry defence flashing a shot across goal which was enough to reenergise the travelling support.
Rovers continued to press as Burke’s in swinging corner was met by the head of Lee Grace before flying over the top.
Midway through the second half, City really rode their luck as Burke hit the post from close range.
His effort ricocheted off the post into the path of Sean Kavanagh on the edge of the box but his driven effort was saved by Doherty before Carr was bottled up and the danger cleared.
A high Rovers press troubled the home tactics as they pinned Derry in their own half.
Carr got the ball inside the area, jinking and jiving before ultimately shooting to the left and wide.
Kenny Shiels’ men got a chance of their own, with Ben Doherty sending an inviting ball towards the back post which was narrowly missed by Nathan Boyle at the back post.
This bright spell continued as Gerard Doherty caught a long ball before immediately starting a counter attack.
Nicky Low found substitute Nathan Boyle but the latter’s effort went to the left and wide.
Carr and Burke almost combined as the game entered the final ten minutes only for Conor McDermott got across to make a vital interception.
In injury time substitute Brandon Miele sent a fine volleyed effort towards goal from 25 yards.
The ball dipped and appeared destined for the bottom right corner of the net before falling wide, allowing the home support to breathe a sigh of relief.
Derek Tomney’s whistle brought the game to an end soon after confirming a 0-0 draw.
That draw ensuring Derry City stayed unbeaten for an eighth consecutive league game.
Derry City: Gerard Doherty; Jack Doyle, Darren Cole, Eoin Toal, Conor McDermott; Rory Hale, Aaron McEneff, Nicky Low; Jamie McDonagh (Nathan Boyle 66), Ronan Curtis (Ben Doherty 31), Rory Patterson.
Subs not Used: Eric Grimes (gk), John Cofie, Cathal Farren, Scot Whiteside, Niall Logue.
Booked: Aaron McEneff (63).
Shamrock Rovers: Kevin Horgan; Ethan Boyle, Roberto Lopes, Lee Grace, Joey O'Brien; Greg Bolger, Ronan Finn (David McAlister 88), Sean Kavanagh, Aaron Bolger, Graham Burke (Brandon Miele 85); Danny Carr (Gary Shaw 90)
Subs not Used: Tomer Chencinski, Luke Byrne, Ally Gilchrist, Sam Bone.
Referee: Derek Tomney.
Attendance: 2,500 (estimate).
Extratime.ie Player of the Match: Ronan Finn (Shamrock Rovers).