Lisburn Distillery missing trio for Portadown test

MISSING: Aaron Smyth
MISSING: Aaron Smyth

Lisburn Distillery will be without defenders Aaron Smyth and Andrew Ferguson for Tuesday’s Danske Bank Premiership clash with Portadown at New Grosvenor.

The Whites are also missing midfielder Aaron Traynor who is serving a hefty six-match ban following an alleged head-butting incident.

Distillery will be managed by Gary Smyth for the visit of Ronnie McFall’s resurgent Ports.

Regular team boss Tim McCann is out of the country on business.

“It’s going to be a very difficult game,” said Smyth.

“Portadown are going well and they have Gary Twigg now on board – he has scored in his first two games. Everyone knows what he’s all about.

“Obviously, it’s not ideal having our two full backs out, but on the plus side Johnny Harkness has recovered from injury. He will slot into left back.”

Distillery continue to linger at the bottom of the Premiership table.

Just two wins from 24 league outings have left the Whites firmly embroiled in a massive relegation battle this season.

“We are desperately battling for points. We must now start turning draws into wins. We managed to knock in a few goals during Saturday’s Irish Cup win over Coagh United,” Smyth added.

“The boys visibly grew in confidence. Hopefully, we can keep that going. Big Michael Halliday went on from the bench and he changed the game. He scored a great equaliser and then was fouled inside the box for our penalty. Once that went in, the confidence levels started to rise – everyone wanted the ball – they all wanted to express themselves.

“Their goalkeeper made a few great saves – it could well have been seven or eight in the end. Confidence is a massive thing in football – we looked like an entirely different team over the last 20 minutes.

“It’s a young group of players – a lot of them are still learning. It’s our first win since mid-October. We must now try and build on this result.

“If we can get one win then hopefully we can make it two and gather some momentum.”