Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 23 August 2014

Newry City facing player crisis

John McDonnell is hoping that his players rise to the occasion in the face of adversity as he seeks to finally chalk up a ‘1’ in the wins column as Newry City manager.

Almost two months into the job McDonnell has yet to register a full three-point haul and that has seen the border club slide to tenth in the Carling Premiership table.

And things don’t get any easier for the Dubliner as he is faced with major player problems ahead of tomorrow afternoon’s home clash with Ballymena United.

“I was just counting the bodies after training and we’re really down to the bones,” said the former St Patrick’s Athletic manager.

“Emmet Friars is suspended, Alan Davidson is suspended, Kevin Keegan is injured and Niall Henderson will probably be out.

“We’re down to 14 fit players for the Ballymena game.

“There is not a lot we can do, but sometimes in circumstances like this it galvanises the players and things just go for you.

“We need to get a win. We really need to get going. Last Sunday against Cliftonville we scored two away from home and still got nothing.

“I never thought I’d go this long still looking for my first win, but there have been games — against Portadown and Lisburn Distillery — that we should have won.”

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