CORK City’s John Caulfield believes Derry City are serious contenders for the league title and they come south to Turner’s Cross for a big TV game tomorrow night (7.30pm).
Cork hope to have influential midfield men Greg Bolger and Steven Beattie back in the team after injury but this top of the table clash comes too soon for skipper Johnny Dunleavy.
“Derry are a different team to Limerick in that they have more potential and better players and this will be the ultimate test for us.
They have great experience throughout the team and they have had the bulk of the current team for the last three years or so. They are not a new team by any means and they have been around the block in finishing a comfortable third last year and making it into the Europa League.
“Kenny Shiels has done exceptionally well with them in that they were an outside bet for Europe last year but he got them there. They have made a decent start to the season as well and that shows me that they are a serious contender in the title race,” he added.
“Derry is a very similar football club to ourselves even though we are from opposite ends of the country but we have a great relationship with them.
We came into the league in and around the same time in 1984/85 and we have strong connections with the Candy stripes. We both have the highest travelling costs in the league and that’s a connection in itself.
“Given the tragedy of Ryan McBride’s recent passing, I think it will galvanise Derry as a team and bring them even more together in the title race. It will unite them as a team and a city, and while Ryan has been a phenomenal player and team captain, they still have a tremendous squad and won their first four games. This is why I think tomorrow night’s game is our most dangerous game yet and playing away from home might just suit Derry. It will be another tough, physical battle but that’s just the way Ryan McBride would have wanted it,” added Caulfield.
Derry probable (3-5-2) team: Doherty; McDermott, Barry, Jarvis; Curtis, Low, McNamee, McEneff, Schubert; Boyle & Kennedy.