Declan Devine keen to sit down with Glentoran supporters and lay out plans which will help get club 'back to where it needs to be'

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Declan Devine says he wants to sit down with Glentoran supporters to hear their thoughts and lay out his plans for the future with the main goal of getting the East Belfast club “back to where it needs to be”.

Ex-Derry City and Bohemians boss Devine was named permanent Glens manager on Monday evening having initially taken the job on an interim basis following Warren Feeney’s departure last month.

Devine started his reign with a comfortable 4-0 success against Ballymena United, but The Oval outfit are now winless in their last five across competitions heading into Saturday’s clash with Crusaders – their final league match of the season before the European play-offs, where they’re set to meet Coleraine in a semi-final showdown on Wednesday evening.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The 50-year-old stated he was “embarrassed” by his side’s performance during their 2-0 defeat to Cliftonville last weekend, which was a 12th league loss of the season, but admits it’s an honour to have been named boss on a full-time basis having also previously played for Glentoran, winning the Irish Cup in 1996.

Glentoran interim manager Declan Devine. PIC: David Maginnis/Pacemaker PressGlentoran interim manager Declan Devine. PIC: David Maginnis/Pacemaker Press
Glentoran interim manager Declan Devine. PIC: David Maginnis/Pacemaker Press

Glentoran Supporters Union (GSU) are set to meet club owner Ali Pour after writing a letter stating their concerns and Devine admits it’s his intention to schedule a meeting with fans too once the season is finished.

“I want to say how proud and privileged I feel to have become permanent manager of this great football club,” he told the club’s website. “I developed strong feelings for Glentoran when I was here as a player and I am determined to get this club back to where it needs to be.

“I’m not here for pats on the back and I am crystal clear on what we need to do over the close season. I fully understand the need to fully restructure the playing side of the club to make the whole training and playing set-up much more professional and to make sure we are full-time in the true sense of the word. That’s what our supporters deserve and it’s what I’ll make sure they get.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“There’s an identity expected from Glentoran teams and that’s clearly been lost. I’ve already said we have some good players and a lot of good young players coming through here and we also need to make sure that over the summer we recruit the right number of the right sort of players who’ll help us quickly re-establish that identity.

“I’ll be speaking more fully about my plans, expectations and the non-negotiables I demand from any squad once we get this season finished. I want to sit down with supporters to hear their thoughts and to share my thoughts, plans and expectations with them.

"That process will start as soon as the season finishes and hopefully we’ve qualified for Europe through the play-offs.

“Over the next hopefully three games we need to rectify the lack of concentration and the lethargy that impacted us particularly against Coleraine and Cliftonville. We still have a massive end of the season ahead and I’ve emphasised its importance to everyone.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Devine will be without Daire O’Connor, who has registered double figures in terms of both goals and assists this campaign, after the 27-year-old sustained a season-ending injury against Cliftonville.

"Today will be a strange one as Crusaders might be thinking ahead to the play-offs,” he added. “But we’re playing at the Oval in front of our own supporters so I want a strong focus and intent from our players.

“Unfortunately, Daire O’Connor broke his elbow at Solitude last week and will miss the rest of the season. That’s a huge loss for us and for Daire as he’d worked so hard to get fit after the injury that kept him out of the Linfield league game. He’ll be missed.

"Also David Fisher is still out injured but Jay Donnelly will be available after suspension. More positively, Aaron Wightman had his operation on Wednesday so he’s started his journey to recovery. I wish him all the best.”

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.