Premier Division: Greene strike sinks Derry in top-two showdown

Rovers keeper Alan Mannus comes out to deny Derry's Ally Gilchrist in Friday night's game
Rovers keeper Alan Mannus comes out to deny Derry's Ally Gilchrist in Friday night's game

Aaron Greene's first-half goal gave Premier Division leaders Shamrock Rovers a 1-0 win over Derry City.

The striker slotted into the bottom corner three minutes before the break and seconds after Junior headed just wide for the Candystripes.

David Parkhouse shot straight at keeper Alan Mannus as City pushed for an equaliser before Junior blasted over.

Rovers held on to move 11 points clear of a Derry side which saw their run of five straight wins come to an end.

A big Brandywell crowd observed a minute's silence before the game as a mark of respect for Lyra McKee, who was shot dead in the city on Thursday night.

The visitors bossed possession but rarely threatened Derry in a disappointing first half.

Lee Grace headed wide from a Joey O'Brien free-kick while Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe and Eoghan Stokes sent efforts off-target at the other end.

City's high press produced a Rovers mistake and Parkhouse drilled in a dangerous cross from a clever Barry McNamee backheel.

Candystripes midfielder Greg Sloggett rises highest to head clear against the leaders
Candystripes midfielder Greg Sloggett rises highest to head clear against the leaders

Junior rushed in to finish from close range but he glanced wide and within seconds Greene had burst clear from deep.

The forward kept his nerve and placed the ball beyond Peter Cherrie and into the bottom corner.

Parkhouse wasted City's best chance to level early the second half with Junior's pass setting him clear but his low strike flew straight at a grateful Mannus.

Junior also missed out as he met a low cross but scooped the ball over from 10 yards.

Rovers withstood everything City threw at them and they almost snatched a second goal in added time with Cherrie making a fine save from Joel Coustrain's angled drive.

Declan Devine's team started the evening in second place but the defeat sees them drop down to fourth.

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