Kenny begins St Pat’s reign with defeat by Derry..see more…

Derry City came away from Richmond Park with a hard-earned 1-0 win over St Patrick’s Athletic in former Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny’s first match in charge of the hosts.

Paul McMullan’s late winner was enough to seal three points in a scrappy contest.

The result extends the Candystripes’ unbeaten run to six matches and keeps them one point behind leaders Shelbourne.

It was game one of a four-day Dublin double-header ahead of a trip to Shamrock Rovers for Ruaidhri Higgins’ charges on Monday night.

With Kenny in the home dugout for the first time following confirmation of his appointment on Thursday, Derry arrived in Inchicore having won the reverse meeting 3-1 just under a month ago at the Brandywell.

It was a slow-burner of a contest with neither goalkeeper being tested early on.

McMullan flashed a ball across the face of goal on 25 minutes but nobody in Derry’s navy blue away shirt could get a touch. Patrick Hoban was a peripheral figure in the first half and let his frustrations show with a series of fouls eventually earning him a yellow card from referee Mark Houlihan.

As the half wore on, the visitors began to edge proceedings with a Will Patching shot blocked after a Ronan Boyce foray into the Pat’s box with the English midfielder also having a dipping free kick stopped by Danny Rogers on 40 minutes.

After Kenny’s first half-time team talk at Richmond Park, the hosts came out looking perkier in the second half. Former Cliftonville man Luke Turner headed wide from a corner 10 minutes in while Brandon Kavanagh stung the hitherto-unused hands of Brian Maher with a long-range strike shortly after.


Just before the hour mark, Higgins introduced Patrick McEleney and Michael Duffy off the bench and the latter almost picked out Hoban with a teasing cross from the left.


However, it was the hosts who came closest to an opener on 66 minutes as Kavanagh’s strike beat Maher but not Shane McEleney, who cleared off the line.


The significance of that block was highlighted on 77 minutes when an inch-perfect through ball by Patrick McEleney was latched on to by McMullan, who coolly slotted past the onrushing Rogers for his second of the season