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“Everything to play for”, says OK

COLERAINE boss Oran Kearney has challenged his players to hit the same performance levels as they face Crusaders this evening…

The Bannsiders put in a spirited performance against Cliftonville on Good Friday but they would have to settle for a point as a late deflected free-kick earned the Reds a share of the spoils after a fourth consecutive 2-2 draw.

Despite being disappointed in the manner and the timing of the goals his side conceded at Solitude, Kearney acknowledged how the Stripes coped throughout the 90 minutes in north Belfast.

“It’s so important we keep going,” he said.

“You’ve got to come to places like Solitude and be big and be strong and stand up to everything they throw at you.

“Paddy’s assembled a great side here and I thought Cliftonville played some great stuff.

“They asked us plenty of questions but to be fair to our guys, I thought we stood up to the majority of it.

“That’s the levels we need to be at and when we hit this top six and into the play-offs, that’s the expectation we need to be at.”

Kearney’s men know they will be involved in the end-of-season play-offs for European football.

With that in mind, the Bannsiders chief has challenged his players to secure home status for at least one of those contests.

“There’s big parts of it we are happy with but the key thing is eradicating those simple errors that cost us the goals,” he added.

“There’s still a huge amount to play for, particularly with the play-offs at the end.

“It’s important that you finish as high up the table as possible to get a home venue and you want to go into them in as good form as well.

“It’s cranked right up and there’s everything to play for.”