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Niall Currie refuses to get carried away as win puts Ards joint top

Ards 1 Portadown 0

By Keith Bailie

Published 15/08/2016

Staying cool: Niall Currie believes his Ards team can play better
Staying cool: Niall Currie believes his Ards team can play better

New boys Ards may be joint top of the Danske Bank Premiership but manager Niall Currie isn't getting carried away just yet. The Red and Blues have claimed seven points from their opening three games, beating Dungannon Swifts on Wednesday before an injury time goal from Carl McComb handed them a 1-0 win over Portadown on Saturday at the Fuels Arena.

But Ards boss Currie believes his players can do better.

"Our boys are working their socks off. They have done incredibly well to get into this position but if they are to maintain their good start they are going to have to play better," he said.

"I actually think we can play better than what we have shown so far and I certainly think we can keep the ball better.

"But you can't fault my players' work rate, nor their ability to keep their shape. We've made ourselves difficult to break down and that's a good foundation.

"If we can keep that solidity at the back whilst keeping possession, I think we will be okay."

On Saturday, Ards survived a last ten-minute onslaught from Portadown that saw Stephen Hughes, Robbie Garrett, Brendan Shannon, Mark McAllister and Aaron Haire all miss chances. Also, inside that ten-minute storm, Ards defender Johnny Taylor was sent off for a second bookable offence.

Despite playing with 10 men Ards found a 92nd-minute winner when David Miskelly spilled Jordan Hughes' free-kick for McComb to tap home.

Ards: Hogg, Hall, Taylor, Friars, Ruddy, McMillen, Brennan (McComb, 58 mins), Tommons (Liggett, 79 mins), Cherry, McAllister (Hughes, 69 mins), Arthurs. Unused subs: McMullan, Byers

Portadown: Miskelly, Shannon, Breen, O'Hara, Parker, Henderson, Garrett, Mackle (Kirwan, 59 mins), Hughes, Simpson (Haire 72), McAllister. Unused subs: McGaughey, Carson, Murdock

Referee: Arnold Hunter (Maguiresbridge)

Man of the match: Craig McMillen

Match rating: 6/10

Belfast Telegraph

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