Kearney gives the credit to his players

Coleraine's Jamie McGonigle after scoring his side's second goal against Carrick Rangers
Coleraine's Jamie McGonigle after scoring his side's second goal against Carrick Rangers

Oran Kearney hailed his players after they racked up their third victory in a week and leapfrogged Linfield in the league table.

Coleraine’s 2-1 win over Carrick Rangers wasn’t a classic, but it extended their unbeaten run in the league to ten games.

Coleraine's Manager Oran Kearney watches as his side earns a 2-1 win over Carrick Rangers

Coleraine's Manager Oran Kearney watches as his side earns a 2-1 win over Carrick Rangers

Speaking afterwards Kearney pushed the plaudits on to his players and challenged them to keep the run going.

“The run will continue for as long as the players want it to continue,” said the Bannsiders boss.

“I haven’t changed anything I’m doing, I’m still singing the same songs, saying the same things, and producing the same training sessions.

“We have a real chemistry this season, the players have really bought in to what we’re trying to do, and they’re one big unit.

“It’s all credit to them because they have created this run and kept it going.

“I think the way they celebrated the goals today shows just how much it means to them.

“When you see Lyndon’s goal go in, as much as the players are all tired, every player ran to him to celebrate at the Railway End. It just shows you what it means to people.

“That’s why we’re on the run we’re on at the minute, no other reason.”

The hosts were a bit below par in the first half, but it was to be expected after the midweek exertions at Ballymena.

The introduction of Darren McCauley and Jamie McGonigle on the hour mark gave them fresh impetus, and the goal flowed as Lyndon Kane and McGonigle fired them into a two-goal lead.

“Darren and Jamie’s exclusion today was not performance based. The two of them have been doing so fantastically well.

“Having played the game myself I know a third 90 minutes in a week can be tough going. The way they both play they expend a lot of energy and we felt today we would freshen it up with two guys who didn’t play during the week.

“We thought it would give us a wee bit of extra energy and then Darren and Jamie would have at least 30 minutes in their legs, and so it proved.

“I thought Darren really gave us a lift when he came on and Jamie obviously scored the second goal.

“Fair play to both of them, they have been a big plus for us today.”

Carrick Rangers skipper Aaron Harmon lashed in a great goal with nine minutes to go to set up a tense finale, but ultimately Gary Haveron’s side were left with nothing to show for their efforts again.

“It was another gutsy performance by us but we’ve ended up with no points,” said a disappointed Haveron at the end.

“That’s been the story of our season unfortunately.

“Coleraine are on the crest of a wave, momentum is really with them, and they get the breaks. But at the other end we’re not getting the breaks, it’s what happens when you’re down there.

“The boys could have thrown the towel in at 2-0, but they rallied and in the end they were unlucky not to come away with something.

“It must be frustrating for anyone who comes to watch us play because we create chances, but we’ve just been conceding really soft goals, and it’s the same type of goal.

“We work incredibly hard to try and nullify these wee mistakes, but unfortunately we’re getting punished for everything we do.

“That’s the difference between here and the Championship.

“I have a good honest bunch of boys in that dressing room and they are very committed to trying to stay in this league.”