Belfast Telegraph

Glenavon are homing in on a Mourneview Park triumph against Glenavon

By Stuart McKinley

Jonny Tuffey has revealed how he and his Glenavon team-mates have taken confidence from defeat.

And he believes a repeat of the performance in the 1-0 loss to champions Crusaders can lead to a first home win of the season against Glentoran tonight.

So far this season, Mourneview Park has been a happy hunting ground for visiting teams, with the Crues' north-Belfast rivals Cliftonville also taking three points there and Tuffey is determined that it's a scenario that won't last.

"We've had a couple of home defeats, which is obviously not what we have wanted, but overall in the four games our performances have been excellent. The performance again Crusaders definitely deserved more," said Tuffey.

"Looking back at the Cliftonville game on the opening day, if we are really honest we didn't deserve anything from that.

"The Crusaders game was different and I think anyone watching from a neutral perspective would agree that we deserved at least a point.

"We didn't get it, it was another home defeat and you want to make your home ground a tough place to come and we have to look to put it right.

"We definitely took confidence from the way we played against Crusaders.

"We were up against the champions and we more than matched them and controlled the game at times too.

"If we keep playing like that it won't be long before we get a home win on the board."

It's far from all being doom and gloom at Glenavon though.

Tuffey is looking at the bigger picture and with himself, plus Andy Hall and young prospect Joel Cooper coming into a squad that finished third in the Premiership last season, the outlook remains bright.

"The plus side is that we have won our two away games and played well in them," said Tuffey.

"There is quality right throughout the squad as well. There have been players on the bench in the first few games who will play a lot this season and there are a couple coming back from injury who will have an impact too.

"There is depth there as well with some very good young players."

Although he is only 28-years-old, Tuffey is actually among the older players in the Glenavon team, with Hall and Cooper joining the likes of Rhys Marshall, James Singleton, Andy McGrory, Mark Patton, Mark Sykes and Joshua Lynch in a squad that shows great promise for the future - if manager Gary Hamilton can keep it together.

"The number of young players who have been blooded in recent times is testimony to the work that Gary and Paul Millar are doing at the club," said Tuffey.

"They have shown faith in the young players and they are now getting the reward for that.

"With experienced Irish League players like Kyle Neil, Kris Lindsay and Kevin Braniff alongside to bring them along, they will do well.

"I am 28, but when I look around the dressing room it is getting younger and younger all the time."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph