Belfast Telegraph

Watch: The Glenavon fans are brilliant, beams new man Josh Daniels

By Gareth Hanna

Five minutes is a long time in football. For Josh Daniels, it was long enough to begin a love affair with his new supporters.

Glenavon's latest signing came off the bench and rescued a point at Mourneview Park on Friday night after a Robbie McDaid double looked to have snatched the three points for Glentoran.

And, although still beating himself up for spurning an even later chance to make it 3-2, Daniels was full of praise for the Glenavon support.

"The fans were brilliant," he said. "The place was packed, even at the end. A lot of fans might leave at 2-1 down but you can't beat that at the end. It's jammed and they're going mental. It's a nice environment and I think I'm going to get on well here."

Daniels' late cameo was enough for the Lurgan Blues support to speculate that they've signed a real gem to replace Joel Cooper and the good news for them is that the player himself wasn't satisfied with his action-packed performance.

"I like to expect a bit more of myself if I'm being brutally honest but I'm not match-fit," he said.

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Josh Daniels came on for his Glenavon debut and fired home a late equaliser against Glentoran on Friday evening.

Daniels' last gasp header was tipped over by another save from the out-standing Elliott Morris while Simon Kelly also had an injury-time opportunity to win it for Glenavon.

"Our heads are a bit down," conceded Daniels after the final whistle. "We were 1-0 up and comfortably at a time and I think I had three chances as well. I'm a bit angry I didn't put away the second one.

"You're coming to watch entertaining football and long may that continue. You never know what might happen, we could get a cup run and shock people to finish high in the league as well, you never know."

Daniels suffered tragedy in March 2016 when five members of his family including his mother Ruth and sister Jodie died at Buncrana Pier. He made a courageous return to football two months later and scored on his Derry City debut against Finn Harps.

“I didn’t know how to celebrate," he later told the Derry Journal of that strike. "I was screaming and clenching my fists and I remember my teammates were consoling me in a way. It was a significant time for me - a very special night!

"It was a massive game for us as it was a chance to avenge the loss in the first game of the season and it was on TV in front of thousands of fans. I was sitting on the bench and Kenny (Shiels) said, ‘get ready Josh’ and it just felt right. I came on and got a massive reception and then it all started."

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