IRISH LEAGUE: Third place the priorty as Coleraine face Glenavon

Excitement in the Coleraine area is building with the Irish Cup final on the horizon but for Oran Kearney there is a bigger target in the sights.

Friday, 14th April 2017, 7:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 9th May 2017, 6:49 pm
Oran Kearney. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

“Third place is bigger than the cup final to be honest,” said Kearney, March’s ‘Manager of the Month’ winner. “When you talk about it in pure finance what you get for qualifying for Europe compared to winning the cup is massive.

“I’ve told the boys to be selfish and that I want both, and I want them to want the same.

“There’s no talk of finals in the changing room, the focus is on the next game.

“Now that switches to Glenavon and until we secure third spot there will be no talk of a cup final.

“If you had said to me last summer we would be in the Irish Cup final and playing for third in the league, I probably wouldn’t have believed you.

“The rate of our development has been fantastic and that has probably been dictated by our young players.”

Glenavon manager Gary Hamilton is excited by the challenge facing his players with away trips to take on Coleraine and Linfield inside four days.

“We will be visiting probably the two most in-form clubs in the league,” said Hamilton. “But these are the tests all players should relish.

“We must have confidence if we work hard together.

“Chris Turner and David Elebert are both recovering from hamstring strains, with Guy Bates suffering with ankle trouble and Aaron Canning a back injury.”