As the start of the season draws closer, the situation at Ballymoney United becomes increasingly dire. Having seen a number of players sign for other clubs and a lack of commitment from others, manager Peter Cairns is at a loss as to what to do for the best.
On Saturday his side suffered another heavy defeat, this time losing 6-1 at the hands of Riada FC.
“Things really aren’t going well at all,” said Cairns. “There was a meeting at the club on Monday in a bid to try and pull things together. The committee need to show the players they will support them and it’s up to them to convince them to give us a season.
“It was disappointing that so many haven’t come to training and also to lose the guys to other clubs. We talked at the end of last season and they agreed to give us a season so we didn’t expect it. It’s totally demoralising! Robert (McCaw) and I have worked our socks off to try and get players in but when you are relegated there isn’t that appeal to attract them.
“At the moment we aren’t even good enough to compete in the Intermediate league yet the committe are insisting we do, however, if you can’t field a decent side what is the point. We played at the weekend with three or four regular players and the rest were Under-17 players. Those lads just aren’t ready for that level but fair play to them, they are sticking at it.
“I’m hoping the committee wil be able to pull some of the guys together and convince them that they will back them. I feel sorry for guys like Noel Lamont who has worked hard trying to get players on board.
“I have spoke to the committee and I have offerd to step aside but I have agreed to stick at it for a few more weeks.
“I will never walk away because I don’t want to put the fight into it. If I go it’s because I feel I can’t do anymore. Robert told me on Thurday night that he didn’t want to continue but I’m hoping to persuade him to give it a few more weeks.”
“This week will tell a tale but no matter what way you look at it, the situation isn’t good.”