Match Preview

Stripes chasing hat-trick of wins

COLERAINE will hope to pick up another valuable three points as they face Glentoran at The Oval tomorrow afternoon (KO 3pm)…

The Bannsiders made it consecutive wins last weekend as a deadly double from Aaron Burns was enough to overcome Cliftonville at Solitude. As the game looked destined to end in a draw, the striker curled a delightful winner on 90 minutes to make it maximum points from our opening two Danske Bank Premiership fixtures. After suffering an opening day defeat, the Glens registered their first success of the season at the Bangor Fuels Arena last time out as John McGuigan and Curtis Allen powered home against Ards.

The two sides met each other on four occasions last season with Coleraine winning three and one draw. The first fixture was in September 2017 and Coleraine suffered an early blow as Josh Carson was red carded inside the first 20 minutes. However the Bannsiders held their own and created several chances to win the game but thought they would leave empty handed as Glentoran were awarded a penalty in stoppage time. Thankfully for the Stripes, midfielder John McGuigan was unable to convert from 12 yards. The second fixture was a month later with Coleraine registering a 3-0 win at The Showgrounds, before goals from Eoin Bradley and Ciaron Harkin sealed a 2-0 win in East Belfast in January. The last meeting was in March in the quarter-final of the Irish Cup and a first-half strike from Darren McCauley was enough to separate the two sides, despite a second-half onslaught from the Glens.

Coleraine manager Oran Kearney will once again be without the services of Lyndon Kane and James McLaughlin through injury, however defender Stephen O’Donnell is available after serving his two-match suspension. The boss insists the arrivals of legends Gary Smyth and Paul Leeman to the backroom staff will give the Glens an added ‘impetus’ for the upcoming campaign.

“We always get it tough at The Oval and we know that we will have to be at our best,” Kearney said.

“Whilst Glentoran might not have signed many new players, they will have new impetus after arrival of Gary Smyth and Paul Leeman to the backroom staff.

“They are legends at the club and will bring new and fresh ideas across.”

Supporters are urged to read the following travel and safety information released by the PSNI (HERE) before making their way to The Oval.

As ever, those unable to attend can follow the latest developments via the club’s official Twitter account (@ColeraineFC).

TRAVEL

The Spirit of ’74 Supporters Club have no seats remaining for the fixture and will be taking two buses to East Belfast.

The Blue and White Army Coleraine Supporters Club have no seats remaining on their 50-seater bus.

Garvagh, Kilrea and District Supporters Club will be leaving Rugby Avenue at 12:30, with a pick up at the car park in Garvagh at 1 and the Northern Bank in Kilrea at 1:10. The cost is £15 for non-members & £10 for members. Membership for the season is £20. Contact 07756592041 or 07712462089.