IRISH LEAGUE: Portadown’s Vinny Arkins knows defeat is not an option

Portadown's Vinny Arkins
Portadown's Vinny Arkins

Portadown interim manager Vinny Arkins will send his players into Saturday’s crunch basement clash with the message to call on both spirit and skill.

The Ports trail tomorrow’s opponents Carrick Rangers by 10 points in the race to beat the drop out of the Danske Bank Premiership.

Victory on the road would serve up a welcome boost in the Ports’ relegation fight - with defeat considered a decisive blow even with the calendar on November.

Arkins enjoyed highs and lows as a Ports player but the former captain and all-time leading scorer is aiming to map out a plan that can help rescue his club from the sidelines.

“We obviously go into the game with a win the target,” said Arkins.

“But we must be clever in how we approach the match, it is going to be about battling but also using our brains in the right situations.

“We must stay tight but take advantage of any chances that pop up as, with the stakes so high, it could prove one opportunity settles everything on the day.

“Carrick will make it tough and conditions could play a part, especially at such a tight venue.

“You still only get three points for a win but, given the circumstances, victory would be like six for everyone connected to the club.”

Aand Arkins has issued a rally cry to the Ports fanbase.

“The supporters have a massive role to play in getting behind the club for such an important game,” he said.

“It is crucial we go in with the mindset of looking for a win and the fans can certainly help.

“The support this weekend will be more important than ever as we try to get a vital win in our league fight.

“Against Crusaders you could see that battling spirit and it has been the same in previous games. We will need those qualities this weekend in such a big game against Carrick Rangers.

“This is a really big game for everyone at the club,” he added.