MICHAEL Doherty believes that Oran Kearney is the man to bring success to Coleraine and is looking forward to sharing in the glory.
Doherty was Kearney’s goalkeeper throughout his time at Limavady United and the Magilligan-based shot-stopper admits the prospect of working under Kearney was part of the attraction of moving to Coleraine.
“I really enjoyed playing under Oran at Limavady,” he said.
“He is completely professional in everything he does. He’s a born winner and expects a very high standard of all the players who play for him.
“I’ve played in the top flight before for both Limavady and Institute, but when you drop down a level as I did, sometimes you don’t think you’ll get another opportunity to play at the top level again.
“I’m delighted to have this chance to play for Coleraine in the Premiership and I’m determined to grab it with both hands.”
While grateful for the opportunity to play top flight football again, Doherty knows he’ll have a fight on his hands to establish himself at Coleraine ahead of current number one Gavin Cullen, but he’s looking forward to competing for his place.
“Oran says he wants competition in all areas of the pitch,” he said.
“Competition for places is good because it helps keep players on their toes and I’m looking forward to some healthy rivalry with Gavin Cullen over the coming season.
“I’m not coming to Coleraine to sit on the bench, so I’ll be working very hard and looking to impress in pre-season to try and earn a starting place.
“Although the last season has just finished I’m really looking forward to starting up again.
“In my opinion Coleraine are one of the biggest clubs in the league, probably the biggest outside the ‘Big Two’ and should be challenging in the top half of the league and looking to win cups.
“Hopefully I can help the club push on and really challenge in my time here.”
Oran Kearney believes Doherty will be a big asset for the Bannsiders.
“We needed another goalkeeper with Davy O’Hare leaving and from my experience of working with him at Limavady, Michael will prove to be a big asset to the club,” he said.
“His all-round attributes and in particular his kicking, are excellent and again he is someone who is based relatively locally.
“He has a similar amount of experience to Gavin Cullen and I’d expect there to be good competition between the two of them next season.
“Michael has played in the top flight before and I know he is itching to get another chance at playing Premiership football.”