Oran Kearney hoping for some injury relief for Coleraine

Coleraine manager Oran Kearney.  Photo by David Maginnis/Pacemaker Press
Coleraine manager Oran Kearney. Photo by David Maginnis/Pacemaker Press

Oran Kearney is hoping for some relief on the injury front at The Showgrounds after a difficult few weeks for Coleraine.

The Bannsiders have been without Lyndon Kane, Adam Mullan, Stephen O’Donnell and Stephen Lowry in recent games.

And they suffered a further blow last Saturday as both Aaron Jarvis and Jamie Glackin limped out of the draw at Larne.

Jarvis looks to have suffered knee damage which is not ideal coming into a hectic festive period.

“It’s not ideal considering we had a few missing coming into the game last week,” said Kearney.

“We will have to assess Aaron and Jamie to see the extent of thin gs.

“It’s disappointing from that point of view and hopefully they aren’t too serious.

“Adam Mullan has a re-niggle of a knee injury, Stevie Lowry has a problem with his ribs in terms of a small fracture and we will monitor it, as well as monitoring Lyndon Kane’s shoulder which is making progress.

“Hopefully with the busy schedule coming up, we can roll a few of them back out again.”

There was a welcome return for club captain Stephen O’Donnell, who has been absent with a calf injury since the draw with Ballymena United on September 14th.

“Yes, it was great to welcome him back and it was much needed,” said Kearney.

“We ideally wanted to get some minutes into him with the Reserves, but the way things are going he will be thrown into the deep end.

“He’s chomping at the bit, he has trained well during the week but it’s slightly early and a bit of risk, but it’s a case of needs must.

“He played in a different position last Saturday, but I thought he was calm and took the ball down two or three times and found a pass.

“Your skipper is a big part of your club, it was great to have him in the changing room pre-game and we look forward to getting him back out there.”

Kearney is hoping his side can get back to winning ways after two draws and a defeat in their last three, but he knows it won’t be easy against Cliftonville.

“We’ve gone from Glentoran two weeks ago, to away to Larne last week and then away to Cliftonville this weekend,” said Kearney.

“The games come thick and fast at this part of the season, but that’s what it’s all about.

“I thought last Saturday we knuckled down, rode the storm better as against Glentoran when we conceded a goal it turned into a catastrophe for 25 minutes, but when Larne scored we got stronger for 25 minutes.

“We spoke about that pre-game and those are some of the traits we want to see again.

“All in all, I don’t think we can be too disappointed with it, and on another day with an uninspired goalkeeper, we would have won it.”

Fourth-placed Cliftonville are also looking for a first win in three and Conor McDermott, who has made a permanent switch to Solitude from Derry City following a successful loan period, says they need to get back to winning ways.

“We haven’t won in three games – we drew against Larne and lost the last two, so getting back to winning ways is a must for us,” he told the Reds website.

“It was great just to get it out of the way (his move) and I’m fully focused on playing my football at Cliftonville now and doing the best I can for the club.

“Hopefully now we can kick on.”