IRISH LEAGUE: Coleraine manager Oran Kearney relishing clash with new Cliftonville boss Gerard Lyttle

New Cliftonville boss Gerard Lyttle

New Cliftonville boss Gerard Lyttle

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Oran Kearney admits he sent new Cliftonville boss Gerard Lyttle a text message to welcome him to the “mad world” of management.

Lyttle has been handed the Reds reins on a permanent basis after impressing in a caretaker role.

Cliftonville have gone on a seven-game unbeaten run under his tenure,including last week’s impressive 3-0 victory over Portadown.

On Saturday they travel to the North West to face Kearney’s Coleraine.

And the Bannsiders boss insists he is under no illusions ahead of the test.

“Gerard is a great fella and I am delighted he got the job on a full-time basis,” Kearney said.

“He impressed during his time as caretaker manager and they are on a good run at present.

“I texted Gerard after he was appointed to welcome him to the mad world of management!

“He is doing a great job and they will be looking to continue that at our place on Saturday.

“But at the same time we are on a good run at present, and we want to keep that momentum going.”

Last week’s 1-0 win over Dungannon Swifts keeps Coleraine in fourth spot in the Premiership – just one point behind Cliftonville who lie third.

“Saturday is a massive game for both clubs,” Kearney added.

“Cliftonville beat us 3-0 at Solitude earlier in the season. It was a proverbial game of two halves, but they proved that day what quality they have and what a good side they are.

“So we are under no illusions going into Saturday’s home game.”