Bray Wanderers 0 Derry City 3 (Barry 7, Patterson 71,91)
Premier Division, Carlisle Grounds, 14 Mar 2016
Aaron Barry’s early opener started a third rot for Bray Wanderers, whose ranks were depleted after last weekend’s injuries.
In the final twenty minutes, Rory Patterson struck twice to put an even worse gloss on the Seagulls’ horrendous opening fortnight.
The home side had a couple of half-chances, but despite holding their own on possession they never really got off their mark, and could have suffered worse had the offside flag not intervened twice to prevent the Candystripes chalking up further goals.
Patterson might have opened the scoring after only three minutes when a snapshot from Gareth McGlynn was brilliantly parried by Peter Cherrie, but only into the striker’s path and Patterson fired the ball into the open goal from close range as the flag went up.
Bray responded in heartening fashion, only good defensive header from Ronan Curtis stopping Alan Byrne’s diagonal ball reaching Hugh Douglas.
The Derry striker had a lead role in the opener that counted a minute after that. Barry McNamee hoisted a deep free which was met by Patterson’s volley.
Cherrie made a fine save down low, but McNamee intercepted the loose ball and placed a cross for Barry to head home low from close range.
Bray pushed back, Jason Marks putting a good corner in but no one could get a head on it and the Candystripes cleared. Douglas went on a run down the wing and won a free, but Marks’s deadball went all the way past the posts.
And a Douglas header returning a Derry goal kick nearly released Ryan Brennan and Drew Lewis but Ger Doherty intervened to clear.
Bray were direct in their tactics, getting the ball into the City penalty area at every possible opportunity, but failing to dent the visitors’ defence.
Robbie Creevy earned the third of Bray’s four cautions with a late tackle on Aaron Barry, and a minute later a Marks cross found Mark Salmon in the area to nod on for Brennan, who was offside and off target.
Approaching the break, the Candystripes almost made it two, a lay off from McNamee to Patterson who ran on centre towards the goal but Cherrie made a brilliant save, diving to his right to divert the attack. The resulting corner was cleared by the defence.
The second half followed a similar pattern, the Seagulls dictating the tempo without finding the tune, as the visitors sought to contain them and break out on the counter.
Derry were trying to get Ronan Curtis into the game more, the young winger seeing a lot of the ball as his team-mates looked to exploit his pace on the left flank, and McBride and Barry were thoroughly solid at the heart of their defence.
Four minutes into the second period, an interception from Aaron Barry started a move involving Monaghan and McNamee with the latter sliding Ronan Curtis down the left to break into the area and finish past Cherrie as the referee blew for offside once more.
On the hour, Bray were awarded a free just outside the area after McCormack fouled Brennan. The Bray attacker took the set piece himself but it hit the wall and Brennan’s corner just missed Robbie Creevy as Doherty punched clear.
Shortly after that, Lewis got the ball and his close control gave Brennan space to release Moore. The former Bohs man then cut in but hit way over under pressure.
The second goal came with less than twenty minutes left after Harry Monaghan bullied his way into the hosts’ penalty area, turned his man and picked out a pass for Patterson who hooked lightly past Cherrie.
Bray were tending to play four or five up front, as substitute Ger Pender and Lewis were joined by Moore and Brennan. A Finnegan free made its way into the Derry area but the Seagulls didn’t have anyone challenging, though they won a corner soon after.
Ten minutes from time, a long ball from Curtis Murphy nearly got to his fellow sub Pender but Doherty claimed before the Bray man could reach.
In the final minute of normal time, Murphy got past McEneff to cross but Lewis headed over amids a crowd of players.
And in time added, Patterson rolled in his third goal in as many games after shrugging off the challenge of Paul Finnegan and casually sidestepping Cherrie.
Bray Wanderers: 1 Peter Cherrie; 2 Hugh Douglas, 20 Paul Finnegan, 5 Alan McNally (yc), 11 Jason Marks; 6 Alan Byrne (yc); 7 Ryan Brennan (yc), 8 Mark Salmon, 21 Robert Creevy (yc), 10 Karl Moore; 18 Andrew Lewis
Subs: 3 Curtis Murphy (for Marks 69), 15 Sean Noble, 16 Dylan Connolly (for Moore 87), 17 Gerard Pender (for Salmon 69), 19 Troy Carey, 23 Gareth McDonagh, 50 Aaron Shanahan (gk)
Derry City: 1 Gerard Doherty; 2 Niclas Vemmelund, 5 Ryan McBride, 30 Aaron Barry, 3 Dean Jarvis; 14 Gareth McGlynn, 6 Conor McCormack, 8 Harry Monaghan, 27 Ronan Curtis; 7 Barry McNamee; 11 Rory Patterson
Subs: 4 Aaron McEneff (for McGlynn 79), 9 Jordan Allan, 10 Keith Ward (for McCormack 88), 12 Joshua Daniels, 16 Nathan Boyle, 22 Patrick McClean (for Jarvis 93), 28 Mark McElhinney
Referee: Robert Harvey
Compiled by Micheal O’hUanachain