IRISH LEAGUE: Whitey Anderson lays down challenge to Ballinamallard following cup collapse

Whitey Anderson
Whitey Anderson

Whitey Anderson is demanding a response from his boys in Friday night’s Danske Bank Premiership clash against Portadown at Ferney Park (8pm).

The Ballinamallard United boss was still scratching his head this week, wondering how his team managed to toss away what to be an unassailable two-goal lead in Saturday’s Irish Cup tie at the Coleraine Showgrounds.

“I’m still in shock,” he declared. “When your luck is out – it is really out. And, when it goes to a penalty shoot-out, it becomes a lottery.

“But it’s gone – we must dust ourselves down and go after three points against Portadown. That’s now our priority, to pick up as many points possible to get away form the relegation zone.”

Anderson will be without injured defender Colm McLaughlin and striker Michael McCrudden for the visit of Ronnie McFall’s team. But on the plus side, new signing from Dergview Ryan Mayse is available – he was cup-tied last weekend.

“McLaughlin is a big loss,” added Anderson. “He has been a big player for us, but sustained a groin injury at Coleraine. McCrudden is still bothered by an ankle problem and has been missing for three weeks.

“Ivan Sproule made his debut last week and he did very well. I’m playing him up front and he gives us a different dimension. He is with us from Linfield until the end of the season and I believe he can make a big impact.

“I brought young Mayse in from Dergview. He’s got a bit of pace about him and he can score goals, so he’ll get his chance.”