Match Preview

Double-header will have no impact: OK

ORAN Kearney insists the Bannsiders will have their full sights set on securing a semi-final berth in the BetMcLean Cup this evening…

The Stripes know they will have a home semi-final against either Portadown or Loughgall in the New Year if they can progress against the Lurgan Blues.

Coleraine and Glenavon met on Saturday in a 1-1 draw but Kearney insists tonight’s clash is a totally different game.

“Double-headers are what they are – I never mentioned it beforehand,” Kearney said.

“Saturday won’t have any impact on Tuesday night.

“Yes, you could say it feels like a win, or that it feels like a defeat, the fact is that it’s a draw.

“Tuesday night we’ll go again.

“I don’t expect anybody to be walking around feeling sorry for themselves come Tuesday night.

“It’s an opportunity to get to a semi-final and that’s what we’ll be going to do.

“Hope there’s a feeling of hurt among the players – two points dropped from a strong position.”

On Saturday’s 1-1 draw at Mourneview Park, Kearney bemoaned his side’s performance after taking the lead with ten minutes to go as Jamie Glackin found the bottom corner.

“I think it’s more frustrating when you look at the results elsewhere, where it would have been an extra bonus two points on top of that where you gain on a lot of teams,” he added.

“I just felt we did he hard stuff extremely well and then the part that should have been, that you should be able to do with your eyes closed, has let us down.

“It’s deeply frustrating in that way where, for me, down to 10 men, the conditions and the scenario it was, they did it well, they sat in deep and they frustrated.

“We had to be very patient and very calculated I suppose in that 35 minutes of the second half and at times it didn’t look like we were going to break them down, didn’t look as if the moment of quality was going to come.

“Finally, on 81 minutes, it did come.

“I think the most frustrating thing for me is in that 35 minutes I don’t remember Gareth Deane having a save to make, don’t remember them being in our final third.

“When you do that hard part of cracking it and getting your goal, the easy part is putting a knife in the ball and killing the last ten minutes and managing the game as everybody says.

“Every player on the planet hears about game management and knows exactly what to in a scenario like that.

“The frustrating aspect for us on the sideline was, from the minute we scored the goal onwards, it became more of an open game again in that they were able to make forays forward.

“In that one moment it’s mental, we were more careless at 1-0 than we were at 0-0, that’s probably the best way to describe it.”