IRISH LEAGUE: Glenn Ferguson demands response from Ballymena United

Glenn Ferguson
Glenn Ferguson

Defender Gareth Roger will play his final game for Ballymena United in Friday’s Danske Bank Premiership clash against Portadown at Shamrock Park.

The big Scot’s loan deal is about to expire, so he’ll return to Tommy Wright’s St Johnstone.

Ferguson is demanding a response from his boys following their Boxing Day defeat to rivals Coleraine, stating they “lacked desire”.

They have the chance to put things right against Ronnie McFall’s erratic Ports, who are still smarting from a last gasp Mid Ulster derby defeat by Glenavon.

“Coleraine wanted to win it more than we did and that’s something that annoyed me,” said Ferguson.

“Individually, we had a few boys who wanted to take the game to them, but we didn’t do it collectively.

“Yes, we had a few players out injured, but we had 14 on the pitch at different times and, irrespective of ability, there should be no lack of desire. There were too many who didn’t show 100 per cent,” added Ferguson, who is about to resign young defender Caolan Loughran who has returned from America.

“He’s back home from August, but we were too late in the transfer window to sign him. He’s been playing junior football. He comes from good pedigree - he’s the son off Eamon Loughran..

“Gareth Roger’s loan spell is to end on January 8 – he will return to Scotland after the Portadown game.”

Ferguson had no hesitation in throwing David Cushley a shirt against Coleraine, in spite of the fact that he has signed a pre-season contract with Crusaders.

“He made the decision to move on, which I respect,” he added. “He wants to win things – I have no issue with that. David will give his all for the club until he moves and I think he proved that with the goal he scored at Coleraine.”

Meanwhile, Portadown will be without skipper and tough tackling midfielder Michael Gault, who was sent off against Glenavon on Saturday, the legacy of two yellow cards.