League of Ireland: Bray Wanderers 2-1 Derry City

Derry had not been beaten since a 6-1 defeat by Shamrock Rovers on 9 March
Derry had not been beaten since a 6-1 defeat by Shamrock Rovers on 9 March

Derry City's 10-game unbeaten run came to a shuddering halt after a shock 2-1 defeat by basement side Bray Wanderers.

Two goals by Ronan Coughlan helped Bray clinch just their second win of the season but they remain six points adrift at the foot of the table.

Nicky Low's second-half goal briefly brought Derry level but they had a late shot cleared off the line and fell to their first loss in eight weeks.

Kenny Shiels' side remain in fourth place and five points off the leaders.

The Candystripes began the night with a chance to break into the top three and were boosted by the return of Ronan Hale after a three-match absence through injury.

The visitors appeared to struggle to get to grips with the surface at the Carlisle Grounds as Bray won four corners during the first eight minutes with Sean Heaney missing a chance at the back post.

Wanderers dominated a low-key opening half but were unable to threaten Gerard Doherty's goal with Gary McCabe, Daniel Kelly and Cory Galvin all having shots that flew over the crossbar.

Derry City's Ronan Curtis had a last-minute shot saved
Derry City's Ronan Curtis had a last-minute shot saved

Derry made an encouraging start to the second half and Rory Patterson nearly gave them the lead with a volley from Low's corner but the visitors were struggling to break down a Bray defence that conceded 29 goals in their previous 14 league outings.

The home side deservedly took the lead on the hour when Coughlan beat Doherty to head home McCabe's corner at the near post.

The lead lasted just three minutes before Conor McDermott's driving run found Low on the edge of the penalty area and the Scottish midfielder fired into the bottom corner.

Derry introduced Ronan Curtis and Ben Doherty off the bench as they sought a winner but Bray regained the lead in the 73rd minute when Conor Kenna picked out Coughlan in the area and the striker scored his second with a composed finish.

The Candystripes pushed forward in search of an equaliser and Kenna headed off his own line in the 83rd minute before goalkeeper Evan Moran produced two excellent saves in stoppage time to deny John Cofie and Curtis.

The defeat, coupled with Waterford's 2-1 win against Dundalk, means Derry have lost ground in their pursuit of a top-three finish before their upcoming matches against Cork City and Dundalk at the Brandywell.

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