Saturday 18th November
Kick Off 3pm
On Saturday we attempt to get our Sports Direct Premiership campaign back on track when we host tenth placed Ballymena United at the Bet McLean Oval.
It has been a difficult campaign for Ballymena United so far under the guidance of new manager and former defensive stalwart Jim Ervin. The Braidmen currently find themselves in 10th place in the table, only above Newry City on goal difference and above basement side Dungannon Swifts by one point. A record of 12 defeats from 16 games played and only 11 goals scored - the lowest in the entire division - has made Ervin’s debut season in management an unforgiving one; they have lost 4 of their last 6 league matches and exited the League Cup to derby rivals Coleraine and only a surprise 3-1 victory in the league over the Bannsiders last month has helped to lift the gloom.
In their only league visit to the Oval last season in March of this year, United were denied a point by a Danny Purkis strike 2 minutes from time that secured a much needed 1-0 win for Rodney McAree’s side.
United will again be without experienced defender Colin Coates because of a long-term injury. Striker Johnny McMurray has been missing since mid-October, so Larne loanee Isaac Westendorf or teenager Noah Stewart are likely to lead their forward line. Former Glentoran midfielder Kym Nelson could also be a doubt after missing the 1-0 defeat at home to fellow strugglers Glenavon last weekend.
Warren Feeney: “Coleraine on Tuesday night was a similar pattern to what we’ve seen over the past few weeks. We dominated the game, defended well and our approach play was good, but we’re just not clinical enough. Bad misses recently have cost us a lot in terms of league points and going out of the Bet McLean Cup. We’re working hard to fix that but I’d be more worried if we weren’t creating good chances.
"The midfield was strong again at Coleraine and Cammy Palmer in particular contributed a lot of good stuff throughout the match. The defence was a credit to us. Paddy and Singo both had great games and I need to highlight the two young full backs, Johnny Russell and Aaron Wightman. Both boys bring energy and confidence to the team . They'll only get better. They're still at a great age and playing at a big club like this can only help them with their career. It’s important that Glentoran brings its young players through all the way so Johnny and Aaron are a great example to our other talented lads.
"For Saturday’s game I know Ballymena have had a very tough start to the season and aren’t where you’d expect Ballymena United to be in the table. But nobody comes to the Oval to give us an easy game so we need to focus on ourselves and to make sure we take a lot more of the chances we create.”
Tickets for this game can be purchased at https://www.glentoran.com/tickets
To reiterate the club’s recent statement, we strongly request that supporters respect the rights of the local residents by parking well away from housefronts in the immediate locality. There is plenty of available parking at the Holywood Arches Heath Centre.
Saturday’s ball sponsor is A&M Motors
A family run business, located in East Belfast and carrying out both bodywork and mechanical repairs. Over the years we have upheld relationships with major car manufacturers here in Northern Ireland, repairing and maintaining their damaged and off road vehicles and getting their customers back on the road.
Call 028 9045 4201 Email firstname.lastname@example.org