Coleraine keep on answering the questions says Stephen O’Donnell

Stephen O'Donnell celebrates his goal against Ballymena United
Stephen O'Donnell celebrates his goal against Ballymena United

Coleraine just don’t know when they are beat says skipper Stephen O’Donnell.

The Bannsiders proved that perfectly on Tuesday when against all the odds they battled back to secure a point against Ballymena United thanks to O’Donnell’s late header.

“This team doesn’t know when it’s beat,” he said. “It’s been said before, we have a lot of character in this team

“We will keep going until the death, and it was a good point in the grand scheme of things. There’s many times we’ve sat in that changing room at half time and been up against it to get the result.

“But we do. Any time this side is asked a question they always answer it. Any time you’re losing a game and down to ten men the message is always to stay in the game.

“We always felt we would get at least one chance.

“Even after we equalised we had a couple of breaks were if we had shown a bit more quality we maybe could have went on and grabbed a winner.”

Tuesday draw was the Bannsiders fifth in eight games. O’Donnell knows they need to start turning some of those draw into wins, but is expecting a tough afternoon in Newry.

“Notoriously Newry is a tough place to go and they have had a decent start sine getting promoted,” he said.

“We saw Cliftonville go there a few weeks ago and come unstuck. We have to go there with the right attitude. We know on our day we’re good enough to beat any team in the Irish League.

“If we show the hunger we showed in the second half against Ballymena then there’s no reason why we can’t pick up the win.

“Three points has to be the aim as draws aren’t good enough at this stage.”

Newry also had to make do with a derby point last time out, with boss Darren Mullen feeling they deserved more.

“I’d like more and I think we deserved a wee bit more. But you just need that bit of luck at times, which we aren’t getting,” he said.

“But, at the same time, there are mistakes we made towards the end that invited that pressure on and that we need to learn from. It’s up to me to make sure we rectify it.

“We haven’t been beaten and there are certainly positives we’ll take out of it. It certainly won’t be a case of letting it linger into training. And if you can’t lift yourselves for a game against the Irish Cup holders then there’s something seriously wrong.

“Those are the games we want to be playing in. We knew it was going to be a rollercoaster this year. This is just part of it.”