Belfast Telegraph

We're ready to take on anyone in cup, says St Theresa’s John Ramsey

By Martin Mawhinney

St Theresa’s right-back John Ramsey insists he doesn’t care who his team get in the next round of the Clarence Cup after they knocked a second successive intermediate level club out of the competition at the weekend.

Division 1C men Mossley were the 4-2 victims on their own turf, joining the might of Premier Division outfit Islandmagee on the list of teams the Saints have disposed of in this season’s tournament.

With such testing challenges in the opening stages, anyone would think that the Whiterock Road-based club, who are way down in Division 2C would be seeking something a little less demanding.

Not at all, argues Ramsey. If anything, it seems they are preparing themselves for their next scalp.

The player/club treasurer claimed: “We are taking each game as it comes, but it doesn’t matter who we get. I suppose you could say we have lost a bit of our surprise factor, but we will be ready for whoever we play.

“Playing an intermediate team is good for us all, and you do raise your game. As long as we get a home tie, we will give anybody a run for their money.”

Unlike the opening round shock over Islandmagee, St Theresa’s didn’t enjoy home advantage on Saturday, yet they did display fine battling characteristics to firstly keep themselves in this game, before eventually overcoming their opponents.

They twice went behind in the first half, with Richard McIlhattan and Dessie McClean both levelling before the break. A strike from Stephen Gillen and an own goal wrapped up the tie in the 90 minutes.

“We stepped up our game in the second half, and I think that made the difference,” stated a happy Ramsey.

“There were a few good individual performances, and it was great to see David Hughes make such a positive debut in centre half.”

The only disappointment for Ramsey is that St Theresa’s haven’t been so prolific in the league this campaign. At present, they are 12 points behind leaders Basement with an extra game played and six left to go.

He added: “Promotion was our main aim, and we still have a very small chance at that, but we shot ourselves in the foot early in the season, with a poor start.”

Perhaps now, though, they can finish it in style.

For the rundown of all the Clarence Cup second round scores, click on our results section.  

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