KuPS v Derry City Match Commentary on Drive105
Derry City is looking to finish the job in Finland against KuPS. The Candystripes looked like a superior team but fell behind to a late first-half penalty in their last match. KuPS were missing some players due to restrictions on entering the jurisdiction in Derry, but African contingent Ibrahim Cisse (Ivory Coast), Collins Sichenje (Kenya) and Clinton Antwi (Ghana) all return. However, one player they will be without is Urho Nissilä, who looked like a threat in Derry and departed for pastures new this week after the expiration of his contract.
There is a major incentive for the winner of this tie. Swiss side Basel were expected to be the next opponent, only to be reduced to nine men in the home game with Kazakhstani side Tobol Kostanay and lose 3-1. The path may be slightly less difficult to the play-off round.
Derry City boss Ruaidhri Higgins thoughts of progressing to the third round: “It would be absolutely amazing. KuPS are a proper team. They’ve got real experience in Europe but we know if we replicate our performance in the Brandywell then we can go over there and get a special result. We know that we’ve got players who can win matches in an instance. If we don’t have to score, great. If we do have to score then we’ve got the talent within our group to do that. If we are going to go there and get a result then we know that we are going to need to be defensively really good as well. Everyone knows what is expected of them, it’s been a real team effort in that sense.”