UNITED UP FOR THE CUP

BALLYMONEY United venture into the fifth round of the JJB Sports Irish Cup this weekend aiming to upset the odds against Dungannon Swifts.

Joe McCall's side are rank outsiders against the Premier League outfit but the United manager is confident his team can upset the odds and secure a sixth round place in the blue riband competition.

And confidence couldn't be higher within the United squad, which lifted itself off the foot of Championship 1 last week with a resounding 3-0 victory over derby rivals Glebe Rangers.

"The Irish Cup is a very special occasion," said McCall.

"It gives players who have never played against senior clubs the chance to do just that.

"It also gives them a chance to be a hero, it's a very special competition.

"I always set a target each year of getting to this round and in my five years here we have got senior clubs each time, bar once."

Indeed, in recent times United have shown they can mix it with the so-called big boys losing by just a single goal to both Crusaders and Glentoran and securing a replay against Institute,

"It's a tricky one for the big clubs," continued McCall.

"As the FA Cup showed at the weekend, anything can happen.

"We have a lot of experience in the team and we'll go there quietly confident.

"We have absolutely nothing to lose and go into the game full of confidence on the back of the Glebe game. It will be a special day for the players and the club and gives everyone their day in the limelight.

"If we can put in a performance it might just be our day."

United were due to play the Welders on Saturday in the Intermediate Cup but like so many sporting fixtures throughout north Antrim at the weekend, the game fell foul to the freezing weather.

Meanwhile, United's neighbours Glebe's interest in the Irish Cup is over after they crashed out to Nortel at the Riada Stadium on Monday evening of last week by two goals to one.

Despite the result against the minnows and their current league position, boss Gareth Scott says he has total faith he is the right man with the right players at his disposal to turn things around.

"I'm hugely disappointed with the result," he told Times Sport yesterday (Monday).

"The bottom line is there has been a lack of confidence among the squad in the last few games.

"We haven't recovered from the winter break anywhere near how we should have done.

"We have a vision of where we want to go and I have complete faith that can be achieved."

Scott said everyone at the club was "desperate to do better and improve" in the coming games.

Next up for Glebe is a league clash with Ballyclare Comrades at the Riada Stadium this Saturday from 3pm.

And Scott says everyone at Glebe is itching to get back to winning ways.

"The reality is we know we haven't performed well," he said.

"We may not have the same surnames or addresses but we are a family at Glebe.

"We have got to work together and improve our position."