Smith: ‘I’m loving every minute of the Irish League’

MARTIN Smith spoke to Jonathan McNabb about how he is enjoying life with the Bannsiders after his move to the club…

Q1. How are you enjoying your spell with Coleraine? Has everyone treated you well?

I’m loving my time at Coleraine. From day one the players, Oran and his staff, Colin and the board, the fans and everyone associated with the club have been first class. They’ve welcomed me in and help me settle immediately and I can’t thank them enough for that.

Q2. How would you describe Irish League football? Have you played in a similar league?

The Irish league is a little unique, it’s high tempo and played with aggression and competitiveness, and as a player if you give anything less than 100% you’ll get found out. I’ve experienced similar leagues, but I’m loving every minute of the Irish League. It’s what you want as a player.

Q3. You have played central midfield alongside Brad Lyons and Ciaron Harkin – how do you rate them?

Brad and Ciaron are top players, it’s a joy to play with them both, I feel we all have different qualities which compliment each other and help the team, because that’s the most important thing, the team. What stands out with them two along with the rest of the team is their characters, desire to win each week, it’s a special group of players and it’s why we realise we haven’t done anything yet, it’s all about the up and coming games and keep driving forward with that winning mentality we have.

Q4. The highlight of your spell so far? The goal against Ballinamallard? Must be proud to have joined when we were top of the league and to still be there currently?

Obviously the goal I was delighted with but I want to build on that through the Christmas period. But for me it’s just winning games on a Saturday, it makes or breaks my weekend, so coming off that pitch with the 3 points is the most satisfying feeling I can have. I try not to think about table standings because there is never a title won in December. It’s great for the fans and the club but for me it’s about no complacency, not leaving a stone unturned each week and onto the next 3 points available, and if we do that we’ll be in around it come the end of the season.

Q5. Toughest opponent so far?

Again, this league is unique because every team is a different test. There is no easy game in this league, that’s for certain. You have to meet each challenge every week head on and as a team believe we’ll come out on top in every game. Crusaders at home were tough because of their direct style of play, but Dungannon on Saturday were just as tough and they like to get the ball on the floor and move it, so every game has been tough and there’s many more to come, let’s bring it on.