League of Ireland Premier Division: Shamrock Rovers 0-2 Derry City

Gary Shaw of Shamrock Rovers and Derry City's Aaron Barry in aerial action at Tallaght Stadium
Gary Shaw of Shamrock Rovers and Derry City's Aaron Barry in aerial action at Tallaght Stadium

Third-placed Derry City enhanced their hopes of securing European football by beating Shamrock Rovers 2-0 to make it four straight league wins in a row.

The victory sees Derry move eight points clear of Rovers in the battle to clinch the top-three finish which would ensure Europa League qualification.

Aaron McEneff fired home a 64th-minute piledriver and Barry McNamee netted a measured finish in added time.

Derry have beaten Rovers in all three league meetings between the sides.

The late Ryan McBride scored the Candystripes' winner in a 1-0 success at Tallaght Stadium in the Premier Division in March.

That was followed by a 3-1 win at Maginn Park in May, a match in which McEneff found the net twice, with McNamee scoring the other.

Kenny Shiels' side have not conceded a goal during their four-game winning streak and will go into their forthcoming FAI Cup and league double-header against Dundalk over the next two Sundays in confident mood.

With five minutes played, both sets of supporters took part in a minute's applause in memory of McBride.

A scrappy first half eventually livened up in the final five minutes as both sides went close to breaking the deadlock.

Rovers' Israeli goalkeeper Tomer Chencinski clawed away a long-range free-kick from McEneff, then home midfielder David McAllister drilled a low shot wide of Ger Doherty's post.

Ronan Finn dragged another attempt inches off-target before the half-time whistle blew.

On the resumption, Luke Byrne's deflected strike went wide, but McEneff nudged the visitors in front against the run of play with his 10th goal of the season in all competitions.

Rory Patterson almost added a second and Gary Shaw cannoned a drive off a post, before McNamee sealed the three points by finding the net from just inside the Rovers half with Chenchinski out of his goal.

Shamrock Rovers have a match in hand over Derry and the fourth-placed finishers may also make Europe depending on who wins the FAI Cup.