EUROPA LEAGUE: More injury worries for City
Derry City manager Kenny Shiels has more injury concerns going into tonight's Europa League second leg clash against Midtjylland, at the Sligo Showgrounds (KO 7.45pm).
With Conor McDermott (groin) and Barry McNamee (ankle) almost certain to miss out, centre-back Aaron Barry is also struggling after picking up a hamstring problem at training this week.
Trailing 6-1 from the first leg, Shiels also conceded that he may select this evening’s side with one eye on Sunday’s home league clash with Sligo Rovers.
“I’ve got to look where we can forfeit someone to have them in better shape for Sunday,” he insisted.
“I have to do what’s best for the club for the domestic season and that’s what I’ll be doing.
“We haven’t been able to prepare for this when you take in the injuries and the difficulties with the window, which hampered us getting the strength in our squad. We haven’t the strength or depth.
“When we get three injuries, it affects us more than it would affect the bigger clubs in the league. That’s where we are at – we have no experience to play in Europe. It’s like lambs to the slaughter, it’s not fair on the young players. I was so looking forward to Europe but now I can’t wait to get rid of it to get back to the domestic scene.”
“I sound in despair but it is just difficult going in with such a thin squad. I could have gone and done a Bray and put ourselves in a better position but that’s prohibitive and we can’t do that; it’s not right to do that.
“We were in for some of the players Bray were in for and it put us at a serious disadvantage not being able to keep with that.
“We’re doing a Bray at the minute because we are playing practically the lads who played in the Foyle Cup last year. It sounds like the same old, same old, but it is going to be very difficult for the players. But it’s one where we can see how we will deal with it and get it out of the way.”
Shiels is hoping the Candy Stripes supporters make the trip to the Showgrounds tonight as he feels his young squad deserve their backing.
“Hopefully the supporters will come and give the players from their city the backing that they deserve. I really feel we need that,” he added.
“The greatest thing that can happen for us tonight is for the supporters to get behind the team, to come to Sligo and to give us that support.
“That’s the biggest assistance we can get at this time. I want the supporters to come and give the boys their experience and give them the support to enjoy this experience because it’s going to be hard for them.”