Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 20 April 2014

Glentoran's McCabe backing himself

Glentoran midfielder Shane McCabe will be hoping that lightening strikes twice tonight when the title chasers travel to Solitude to take on Cliftonville in a re-arranged JJB Sports Premiership clash.

And in turn, the Fermanagh man will also be looking to get a step closer to winning a light-hearted wager he has with Glens striker Gary Hamilton.

At the beginning of the campaign, McCabe bet Hamilton that he would score at least five goals this season and notched up his first in front of the SKY TV cameras with a fabulous strike against the Reds in November.

McCabe has only scored one goal since - an equally impressive one against Limavady United in the cup two weeks ago, and he would dearly love to add to his tally tonight.

Having said that, he knows it is getting the three points in the bag that matters most at this stage of the season.

“I have a wee side bet on with Hamilton that I’ll score five goals this season,” laughed McCabe.

“I’m on two now and it should really be more - I should have scored against Bangor but I’m pretty confident I’ll do it and win the bet. It would be great to score against Cliftonville again. I was lucky enough to score a good goal the last time we played there but it’s all about getting the win and I don’t care who scores.

“I was a bit disappointed with my own performance on Saturday (against Coleraine), I felt I gave the ball away too much so I’ll be looking to bounce back from that from a personal point of view.

“It’s going to be a tough game. To be fair to Cliftonville they are in a good run of form at the minute and are always difficult to beat at their place so we know what we are up against.

“We are going to have to win the battle before we win the right to play football and that’s going to be hard in itself.”

The Glens are currently four points behind the Blues with a game in hand and with the champions playing the other north Belfast side, Crusaders across town at Windsor Park, tonight’s action could be a turning point in the season.

Alan McDonald’s men have been far from impressive for the most part this season but they have at least garnered a dose of grit and determination in recent weeks and while McCabe admits he would love to put on a show, it’s the win that matters most.

“We know ourselves that the football has not been up to what it was last season and that’s a bit disappointing,” he said.

“But now we are coming into a very important stage in the season and at least in the past couple of weeks we have started to grind out wins. Unfortunately sometimes you just have to put the pretty football to one side.”