Saturday 7th December 2019, Kick Off 3.00pm
On Saturday we aim to build on last week’s excellent win over Cliftonville with a journey to the Showgrounds for our third meeting with Coleraine this season.
We have drawn one and lost one to the Bannsiders this season. In the second match of the season, at the Oval in August, we came back from 2-0 down to draw the game through late goals from Hrvoje Plum and Paul O’Neill. That was the least we deserved on the night. Two months ago a largely second choice team travelled north in the League Cup Quarter Final where we were unlucky to lose 2-1 despite playing 62 minutes with 10 men and facing some bizarre refereeing decisions, including having a perfectly good Johnny Frazer equaliser disallowed and a level of inconsistency in the administration of red cards. The Glentoran highlight that night was a debut goal from substitute Navid Nasseri.
It’s hard to call whether or not it’s a good time to be playing Coleraine. After an incredible run without league defeat under Oran Kearney they’ve lost 2 of their last 3, against the bottom 2 clubs, Warrenpoint Town and Institute. Sandwiched between those was a 3-2 win over Carrick Rangers that was aided by a very controversial penalty, awarded when Carrick were 2-1 ahead. On the other hand, Coleraine put in a very strong performance in the League Cup semi-final on Tuesday night to secure a comfortable away win over Linfield. So, we won’t know which Coleraine we face on Saturday until the game is underway. Either way we will face them without Hrvoje Plum, serving a one match suspension following his double yellow card at Solitude last week.
Mick McDermott: “I couldn’t have been happier with our performance at Solitude. From start to finish we performed and didn’t let the standard drop at any stage. We knew we had to make certain tactical changes after the way we lost there the previous week and the lads who stepped in – Cameron, Joe, Willie – were outstanding and justified their selection. They really showed the benefit of having a big squad and the flexibility that allows us. We went there to play for the win, that’s how we started, and we got the early goal that really set us on our way. I was delighted to see Cameron and Cricky get their first goals for us. They’ve been outstanding for us in recent weeks and their performances on Saturday both merited their goals. I’m sure our supporters were all delighted for them.
Saturday will be another massive challenge for our club, but we’re more than ready for it. From day one we have always said that our goal this season was to be competitive in every game, and to make teams worry about playing Glentoran! We are moving in that direction but are fully aware that we can’t take our foot off the pedal for a single minute, and we won’t! We must perform for 95 minutes each week if we are to keep climbing.
We go to Coleraine on Saturday with a sole goal to perform as best we can, to perform for our club and our fans, who we know will make the long journey in great numbers. We know that if we do that then the points may be ours.
We know Coleraine is a top team and they, too, will be up for this game after a massive win against Linfield mid-week.
We are looking forward to the challenge”.