Saturday 2nd September
Kick Off 3pm
The big games keep on coming, as Cliftonville come to the Bet McLean Oval on Saturday.
After a turbulent summer at Solitude, where a protracted managerial appointment and late entry into the transfer market sparked fears of a season of struggle, Cliftonville have started strongly under the stewardship of Jim Magilton and the returning Gerard Lyttle. They won their opening three fixtures without conceding and scored ten goals in the process. A narrow defeat at Linfield and a home draw with champions Larne were to follow, leaving the Reds level in the table with us on ten points.
Having lost left back Levi Ives to Larne and exciting winger Sean Moore to West Ham United, Magilton has primarily turned to the loan market and his knowledge of the Northern Ireland youth setup for new signings. Striker Ben Wilson arrived from Brighton and has scored four goals in the opening five games. Defenders Sean Stewart and Luke Kenny and goalkeeper David Odomosu have arrived on loan from Norwich, St Mirren and St Pats Athletic respectively, with forward Sam Ashford from Ayr and former Linfield midfielder Conor Pepper completing the summer’s work to date.
There were three meetings between the teams at the Oval last season, with a close range Ryan Curran volley sealing the points for the Reds in the first of these last November. The two more recent games, however, were to go in Glentoran’s favour; a first half Bobby Burns double strike sending us on the way to a 3-0 victory in the League in April, before a brace by Junior - who also netted in the previous game - in the first half of the European Playoff Final earned a 2-0 win that secured our qualification for this year’s Europa Conference League.
Veteran forward Joe Gormley has missed the last three games and former Glentoran winger Jamie McDonagh has left to join Glenavon on loan. Defender Kris Lowe may be an injury doubt after being replaced during the game against Larne.
Warren Feeney: “Against Crusaders on Tuesday night the players were outstanding from start to finish against a very good Crues who came here as very much the league’s in form team. I was definitely upset about Bobby’s ending off for “tactical time wasting.” That couldn’t have been further from the truth. All that happened was that as I’d had to move Bobby to left back I didn’t want him to have to run 80 yards to get back into position after taking the corner. So we had to play about 25 minutes a man down. Overall the boys were great on the night and they deserve a massive pat on the back for the honest way they went about things.
We’re still finding our feet a bit as a squad and the injuries we’ve had don’t help with gelling the team or finding the rhythm we want. But I couldn’t be happier with the attitude and mentality the boys are all showing.
For Friday’s game with the Reds it promises to be another very good one. Jim’s got them going well and I’m very pleased for him as he came in for a bit of stick after his appointment. They’re another good side and tough to play against, but we’ll be ready for it."
IMPORTANT SUPPORTER NOTICE
The Board of Directors remind supporters that under no circumstance is anyone permitted to bring flares, fireworks or any other sort of pyrotechnic equipment into the Bet McLean Oval at any time. These are highly dangerous to other supporters and potentially to players.
Any breach of this rule will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Persons breaking this rule will receive a lifetime ban from the Bet McLean Oval and will be reported to the police.
Saturday’s match sponsor is NICDAR TILES
Nicdar Tiles is a tile showroom based in East Belfast supplying top quality Mediterranean tiles at low cost prices.
We sell from a large range of tiles in large format, wood effect, marble style etc. in porcelain and ceramic.
You can find us on Facebook & Twitter
Hanwood Business Park
Telephone: 07852 427240
Saturday’s ball sponsor is DJI Group
DJI Group now firmly established as a quality provider of Design + Build solutions in Ireland & UK. With Offices & Management in both Ireland & the UK, DJI Group’s Key Managers each have over 20 years of practical experience in the following sectors.
- Commercial Office & Commercial Workplace Solutions
- Retail High Street & Mall Environments
- Hospitality Restaurants, Bars & Hotels
- Residential Developer Led & Bespoke
DJI fills an unmet position in the market by offering IN HOUSE design & build services tailored to the individual demands of each project and can therefore adapt in real time throughout the course of any project, adjusting technical details, value engineering and improving procurement processes to maximise the end result.
Contact through www.dji.ie