Derry City got back to winning ways in the Airtricity League Premier Division when they overcame relegated-threatened Bray Wanderers 2-0 at The Brandywell.
Despite the scoreline Pat Devlin’s outfit had a host of chances and in the end those missed opportunities may come back to haunt his side at the end of the season.
The home side took the lead on four minutes thanks to a super cross from Simon Madden found David McDaid and the unmarked striker gleefully headed home from close range.
Wanderers went close to levelling thins on 13 minutes but Ismahil Akinade’s well hit shot on the volley was saved by Derry keeper Gerard Doherty.
Moments later some neat skill by Barry Molloy ended with his cut-back finding Michael Duffy, but just as the striker was about to shot inside the six yard box, centre-back David Webster got back to nick the ball away.
Wanderers should have equalised on 26 minutes as that man Akinade easily got away from Eoghan Osbourne, but the youngster’s close range shot from the left hand side of the box was saved by the out-rushing Doherty.
More good play this time by Patterson saw his right wing cut-back find Madden, but his outside of the foot curling effort, was saved by Darren Quigley.
Then just before the break the visitors had another super chance to level things but Kieran Marty Waters shot from just inside the City box, flew well over.
Pat Devlin’s side had a half chance right at the start of the second half, after Shane McEleney had slipped inside the six yard box, Jason Byrne seemed to caught on his heels and his shot was easily saved by Doherty.
Derry should have doubled their lead on 54 minutes when Barry Molloy’s tremendous pass over the top released Patterson, but his well hit shot, which had Quigley beaten, came back off the crossbar.
Ten minutes later Akinade had another opportunity to level things but his shot from just inside the box was tame and well off target.
On 77 minutes a visionary pass by Patrick McEleney released Michael Rafter, who showed great composure and neatly tucked the ball past the out-rushing Quigley, to seal the points for the home side.
Derry City: Doherty, Madden, S McEleney, Jarvis, Osbourne (P McEleney 58); McDaid, Higgins, Molloy, Duffy; Curran (Rafter 73), Patterson (Foy 90).
Bray Wanderers: Quigley, Webster, Mitchell, Dempsey, K O’Connor (Knight 66), Akinade, Byrne, Water, Earley, S O’Connor, Maher.
Referee: Mr Paul McLaughlin (Monaghan).