Institute boss Paul Kee is planning for life without influential striker Stephen O’Flynn.
The 32-year-old will leave the North West club in January’s transfer window, with Crusaders topping the list of clubs on his trail.
Kee will take his boys down the M2 to face title holders Cliftonville at Solitude on Saturday, so he may well take up the option of leaving O’Flynn kicking his heels on the bench.
“I have to be mindful of the players who will be here after the close of the transfer window,” said Kee, who may well give young guns Robbie Hume and Paul McVeigh the nod.
“I need to get those players more experience. Every week and every game is a learning opportunity.
“Obviously the big plus with Stephen is his goal scoring record this year, which has been good, but we just need to make sure that we get the balance right and do what’s right for the club.
“We must be mindful that we are playing one of the top teams in the league, but we recognise now that O’Flynn will be on his way. At the end of the day there will be life after Stephen O’Flynn.”
Kee reckons that the Reds will be like a wounded animal following their surprise defeat at Coleraine last weekend.
But he will also be urging his boys to follow up their result at Glenavon when a last gasp strike from Gary Hamilton denied Stute of all three points.
He added: “Cliftonville had a bad result and good teams make sure they don’t have bad results back to back. Yes, they are going to hurt, but we have a history of playing well on 3G surfaces and our performances from our last two games have been good.
“In my opinion the only thing which was missing at Glenavon was that we didn’t take our chances. We have good determination as a group, but we just need to start chipping in with more goals.
“Robbie Hume, Stephen Curry and Paul McVeigh when he came on in particular all had chances, so either make it 2-0 or score a second goal for us late-on.”