Swift response keeps Stripes in gr-eight form

Coleraine celebrate Darren McCauley's equaliser. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Coleraine celebrate Darren McCauley's equaliser. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Coleraine’s excellent form in 2017 shows no sign of abating.

The Bannsiders picked up an eighth win on the spin on Saturday with victory over Dungannon Swifts.

It capped off a great week for the Showgrounds side after they also secured their place in the last eight of the Irish Cup, secured four of their promising players to new contracts, and boss Oran Kearney was named Manager of the Month!

Speaking after Saturday’s comeback win over the Swifts Kearney said he hasn’t changed anything, before praising his backroom team and players as they bid to make it a memorable finish to the season.

“It’s nice to get the Manager of the Month award, but I said to the players before the game it’s for everyone - all the backroom staff here, players, fans - it’s one big effort,” he said.

“We have the two best kit men in the country the players get everything they want they are treated so well.

“All aspects of the club have to function to put a run like that together.

“I’ve been consistent with everything I’ve done month to month, we didn’t get carried away when things didn’t go our way in December, nor have we get carried away in the last month.

“We have kept a lid on and kept doing what we do best, working hard in training and during games.

“We want to keep the momentum going.”

They showed their mental toughness on Saturday to bounce back from Ryan Harpur’s first half penalty to win thanks to Darren McCauley and James McLaughlin.

“The mentality has been great, but that’s something you grow into as a player,” said Kearney.

“Because we have preached it to the players so much we are now managing games so much better.”

A disastrous 15 minute spell at the start of the second half cost the visitors as not only did they lose their lead, but also Seanan Clucas for an off the ball incident.

“We spoke at half time about keeping our discipline and being hard to break down, unfortunately the one thing we didn’t do was keep our discipline,” said Rodney McAree.

“Seanan has made a rash decision, I haven’t saw it back, but I’m aware his foot has caught Lyndon while they were on the ground the referee interprets that as a red and I have to accept that.

“I thought their penalty was harsh on Andrew Burns though, he was only two or three yards away from the player when he struck it.”