Danske Bank Premiership, Cliftonville V Glentoran
Friday 17th February 2017, kick-off 7.45pm.
This week we visit Solitude to play Cliftonville for the third time this season in the Danske Bank Premiership.
Although the Reds are currently five places above us in the table, honours are even in our meetings this season with one win each. We were beaten 2-0 at Solitude in August while second half goals from Nacho Novo and Steven Gordon turned around an early deficit into a 2-1 home win in October.
Both clubs enter the game on the back of a similar run of results as each have two wins, two draws and two defeats from their last six league games. In our last ten meetings, the Glens have won five, the Reds four and one draw. So matches between these two are nothing if not unpredictable.
Manager Gary Haveron told www.glentoran.com on Thursday morning: “The squad has trained well this week and we will be looking to build on last Saturday’s draw with Glenavon. The match itself was an even one we could easily have won or lost. We had some good chances but we didn’t take advantage, particularly Stevie Gordon’s chance at the very death. But we looked to have a better shape about us - not as open and exposed as we have been so we’ll look to build further on that this week.
Jay Magee is struggling with a hip injury he picked up against Glenavon while Calum Birney remains a doubt after going over on his ankle in training last week. Ciaran Caldwell is struggling with a thigh injury. On a more positive note, Stevie O’Flynn has recovered from his rib injury so he comes back into the reckoning for a place in the squad.”
The Reds will be without three first choice central defenders as Jaimie McGovern, Jason McGuinness and Chris Ramsay are all suspended. Ryan Catney and Ruairi Harkin are long term absentees in midfield while Jude Winchester and James Knowles are injury doubts. Kym Nelson is not eligible to play against his parent club. Striker Davy McDaid’s proposed transfer to Waterford hasn’t been finalised so it isn’t clear if he’ll be available for this one.
Ahead of the game, the PSNI have issued the following advice for supporters:
Glentoran fans travelling by private car to Cliftonville Football Club for the Danske Bank Premier League on Friday 17th February 2017 (ko 7:45pm)are requested to park in the residential areas above Solitude off the Cliftonville Road- ie Cardigan Drive and Knutsford Drive etc etc. Motorists should consider local resident and emergency vehicle access when deciding where and how to park.
Glentoran fans parking in the residential areas around Knutsford and Cardigan are requested to approach and leave the area via the Westland Road and avoid travelling city wards on the Cliftonville Road after the match to avoid traffic congestion.
Those travelling by Bus/ Coach should be at Fortwilliam Roundabout / M2 by 7pm at the latest.
Police will meet the buses at the top of the off-slip road at Fortwilliam and advise drivers/clubs re arrangements for both moving to Solitude and then away from the ground at the end of the match.
Police are reminding fans that there are specific offences created by the Criminal Justice Act NI 2011 in relation to soccer matches-
• Possession of fireworks/flares etc
• Throwing articles capable of causing injury
• Going on to the playing area
• Sectarian chanting
• Drinking on passenger carrying vehicles
In addition all fans are reminded that the areas around the Stadium are “No Street Drinking”zones under Belfast City Council By-Laws. Any Street drinking taking place will be dealt with and any alcohol found seized.
Any public indecency offences such as urinating in public will be robustly dealt with.
Maximum Use of CCTV/ Landrover Roof Top and Hand Held Evidence Gathering will be made both inside and outside the Stadium as part of the Police Criminal Justice Strategy in an effort to deal with any offences which come to light.
Police will take all steps to identify and deal with anyone who has been or is committing offences. It is vitally important for supporter and community safety that these instructions are complied with and that the impact of the event on the local residential and business communities in minimised.
It is hoped that a common sense approach to the evening will be adopted and the occasion enjoyed by all.