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League Cup win gets Dergview season up and running

Thursday, 10 August 2017

WHILE a 4-0 score-line suggests a straightforward win, Dergview took a while to get going as began their season with a first round League Cup victory against Annagh United at Darragh Park on Saturday.

An early goal from Dale Maxwell put Richard Clarke's men in front, but it wasn't until late in the second half when Dergview would stamp their authority on the game.

Robbie Godfrey doubled the lead on the hour mark before Matthew Buchanan and Ryan Campbell scored goals three and four with seven minutes remaining.

"It turns out it was easy enough in the end, but it wasn't an easy match," said manager Clarke. "I think we were a bit more clinical in the second half, got our goals and put it out of sight. But first half we were sluggish enough.

"We were trying to adapt to a new formation and it didn't really work out so we went back to a more conventional set-up. We got the win, so you can't complain too much about it."

The win sees Dergview advance to a second round tie with Carrick Rangers, and their pre-season form suggests they could cause the Premiership side some trouble, despite defeats to more junior opposition.

"It's been up and down. We had good results with a win against Dungannon and a draw with Ballinamallard, but we lost to a few lesser teams like Lisbellaw and Brantwood.

"We were back out training on June 30, so we have a good five weeks under our belt at the minute.

"There's been a big turnover of players, but I'm delighted with some of the players we've got in. Simon McGlynn from Finn Harps is a really exciting winger. There's Matty Callaghan and Adam Buchanan in the middle of the park, players who are really hungry to get going.

"One of the areas we've looked at is the back and we've added a lot of quality players to shore it up, the likes of Duncan Patterson and Graham Taylor. There's lots of competition in there, and they all want to knuckle down hard."

Another player who has come in and already hit the ground running is former Ardstraw hotshot Robbie Godfrey, who Clarke is hoping can strike up a prolific partnership with Ryan 'Rocket' Campbell in the Dergview attack.

"All through pre-season they've been scoring goals together. Robbie is non-stop, all-action, when he gets the chance he can put it away.

"And everybody knows about 'Rocket', top scorer in the league last year, we are delighted to have him on board again."

Another ex-Ardstraw recruit is assistant manager Gary Simpson, who has contributed to an added stability off the pitch at Darragh Park. "Gary brings a lot of professionalism," says Clarke. "He's very good at getting his point across to the players and making them understand what he demands of them."

A top six Championship finish and play-off place remains the bottom line for Clarke, who is relishing getting the league underway with a derby tie with Institute under lights at Darragh Park on Friday Night.

"It is a massive game, the first of the season. It being a derby game and all it will an exciting start to it. Under the lights at home, hopefully we'll get a good crowd down.

"The matches have always been tight between us. Both teams will be looking to lay down a marker and get something from the game."

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