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Gage out to keep Carrick's solid start rolling in clash with Ards

 

By Graham Luney

Ards old boy Denver Gage is looking forward to meeting a few familiar faces during tonight's Danske Bank Premiership clash at the home of his new club, Carrick Rangers.

The big defender moved to Carrick from the north-Down side in the summer and he won't be the only one relishing a reunion as Eamon McAllister, Ben Roy, Stuart McMullan and Mark Clarke also turned out for Ards as well as Carrick's new boss David McAlinden.

Carrick were dismissed as relegation material before a ball was kicked in anger this season but they are in seventh spot on seven points and the players are not ready to respect reputations.

Ards, who are likely to include on loan signing from Linfield, Reece Glendinning in their side, finished last season strongly but they have lost their opening four games and are the only top flight side yet to pocket a point.

Boss Colin Nixon won't be reaching for the panic button just yet but his team could do with points on the board and a fresh injection of confidence.

Former Ballymena United centre-back Gage knows a massive three points is up for grabs even at this early stage of the campaign.

"We have made a decent start," he said. "It's a new group of players but we are bonding well together.

"The boys are enjoying it and hopefully results are reflecting that. David (McAlinden) has shown a lot of faith in his new signings and like all of us he craves success.

"I've heard players say Carrick will struggle and they are reluctant to come here but the boys are up for it.

"I spent 18 months at Ards and it was probably the happiest time of my career.

"They are a fantastic club with fantastic people and I loved the place.

"I'm looking forward to seeing a few old team-mates. I loved it there, we got to a League Cup final and won the Championship. I thoroughly enjoyed it."

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