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OK aiming for level hitting

ORAN Kearney admits tonight’s opponents Newry City will be buoyed after last weekend’s win against Ballymena United…

Gary Boyle’s side earned the win on Warden Street as Adam Salley and Lee Newell struck for City to record a 2-0 success.

Similarly, Coleraine responded from two heavy defeats against Cliftonville and Crusaders by winning 4-1 at home to Glenavon.

With that in mind, Kearney praised his players for showing character as they came from a goal down to beat the Lurgan Blues at The Showgrounds.

“We’ve stood here and said it for years that I can have all the presentations and individual speeches and do everything you want, but there’s no better shot in the arm for players than performances, goals and winning matches,” Kearney said after last weekend’s win against Glenavon.

“That’s the wonder of momentum as when things go in that shape of not going brilliantly, it generally compounds and you can get stuck in a rot quite quickly and I’ve been in scenarios like this before.

“We’re not out of the woods by any stretch, its three points and we will very quickly reset on Monday night to get back to work again.

“The biggest credit I can give the players is that with everything that was thrown against them in the last week, they stuck together and came out with a big response.

“Newry changed manager in the summer and they came here earlier in the season and it was 3-1 on the day but parts of the game they caused us big problems.

“They’ll obviously be buoyed by their big result versus Ballymena and for us, it’s up there on a Friday night and we’ve got to go there and make sure we hit the same levels.”

You would have been forgiven for thinking it wasn’t going to the Stripes’ day last weekend as they hit the woodwork three times when the score was 1-1.

However, the breakthrough would finally arrive through a scintillating strike from Conor McKendry and Kearney remarked he wasn’t surprised by the winger’s deadly contribution as Coleraine earned their first win against Glenavon since March 2020.

“No, I think you have to be solid of mind,” he added when asked if he was worried the second goal wouldn’t arrive.

“We spoke about it at half-time where we weren’t prepared for excuses or not prepared to not have a sob story.

“Credit to the players after the question mark whether or not Lee Lynch’s effort crossed the line, it didn’t stop us and we still had that mindset that the goal would come and it was a matter of time.

“Cometh the hour and cometh the man, and we still stand here regularly and speak about Conor.

“Are we shocked? No. Are we any way shape of form thinking he’s never done that done before? No.

“We see it all the time; I think the big thing is that we keep making these demands of Conor and that we want it more and more.”