COLERAINE boss Rodney McAree was full of delight to see Lyndon Kane back in the starting eleven as the Bannsiders picked up a vital three points against Ards…
The home side should have been out of sight at half-time but poor finishing and excellent goalkeeping meant the two teams went in scoreless at the break.
The deadlock was finally broken on 53 minutes as Jamie McGonigle headed home his 7th goal of the season as Coleraine registered a deserved victory at The Showgrounds.
Speaking after the game, boss McAree has challenged his players to deliver the same intensity in their performances on a more consistent basis.
“It’s been a tough couple of weeks for us in terms of results and today we asked for more hard work and we certainly got that,” he said.
“We could have easily won the game by more than one goal but after the last two performances, we would have accepted a 1-0 win.
“It’s a great clean sheet and a good win in difficult conditions but I thought we played quite well especially in the first-half. I felt we could have gone in two or three to the good but we maybe weren’t just clinical enough in front of goal.
“Maybe that’ll come through winning games, scoring goals and through a little bit more confidence but today will help bring that back.
“We have to deliver that same intensity week in and week out.
“We put in a similar performance away at Linfield and it’s taken a while to replicate that performance, so we have to challenge ourselves to put in a repeat against Glenavon.”
The Stripes were boosted by the return of Lyndon Kane and James McLaughlin to the matchday panel, with McAree also delighted to give a rest to Stephen O’Donnell and Aaron Burns who are carrying knocks.
“It was great to get through the game and not have to use Aaron Burns and James McLaughlin from the bench as it gives them another week to recover from niggles,” he added.
“Stevie O’Donnell had to miss out today because his knee is holding him back. As captain of the club he feels it’s his responsibility to push through pain barriers and play, but we have such a busy schedule coming up we need to make sure we keep everyone fit.
“Lyndon’s performance was fantastic and it was great to see as it gives everyone a lift.
“That’s my first experience of managing Lyndon and he’s everything you want in a player. He has bags of enthusiasm, he is as honest as the day is long and he has quality to go along with it.”
McAree revealed that he would be interested in linking up with Jamie Glackin again after the midfielder was transfer-listed by Crusaders.
“I would be interested in Jamie and I would like to bring him to Coleraine,” he concluded.
“He’s the type of quality player that I’d like to target and there are others who I’m very interested in.
“I don’t want to bring in five or six players but two or three with quality, but at the same time making sure I don’t lose any members of the squad.”