League of Ireland: Derry City 2-2 Shamrock Rovers

Derry City were held to a fourth successive draw at home in the league
Derry City were held to a fourth successive draw at home in the league

Derry City missed a chance to move back up to third place in the Premier Division as they blew a two-goal lead at home to Shamrock Rovers.

Ronan Curtis scored two goals in two minutes to boost Derry's attempt to qualify for next year's Europa League.

He placed a fine shot past keeper Barry Murphy in the 17th minute and quickly blasted in a second from six yards out.

But Gary McCabe pulled a goal back for Rovers six minutes before half-time and Stephen McPhail got a late equaliser.

Shamrock Rovers had replaced Derry in third place after beating Galway on Friday night with Derry losing to Dundalk.

the Premier Division title appears to be a battle between champions Dundalk and second-placed Cork City.

That leaves Derry and Shamrock Rovers, who both have four matches left, fighting it out for third which guarantees a place in Europe.

Ronan Curtis put Derry into a 2-0 lead in the first half
Ronan Curtis put Derry into a 2-0 lead in the first half

Derry, under former Kilmarnock boss Kenny Shiels, took a commanding lead thanks to the quickfire double from Curtis.

The 20-year-old midfielder netted an accurate shot from the edge of the box after a ball in from Dean Jarvis had not been cleared.

Curtis then rushed in to meet Barry McNamee's ball and thump number two past keeper Murphy for 2-0 with less than 20 minutes gone.

Rovers top scorer McCabe punished Derry for losing possession by reducing the deficit in the 39th minute.

Derry keeper Gerard Doherty tipped a David Webster header on to the bar as Rovers pushed for an equaliser in the second half.

Former Republic of Ireland and Leeds midfielder McPhail equalised with a free-kick which went through a group of players.

It was a fourth consecutive draw at home for Derry City who play Dundalk in the FAI Cup semi-final on Sunday.

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