Belfast Telegraph

Lyttle demands desire from Reds in hunt for consistency

By Graham Luney

Cliftonville are no different from any other top side in the Danske Bank Premiership - they must strive for consistency or glory will elude them.

One victory from their opening four league clashes is a disappointing return for a club that performed admirably in Europe, becoming the only Premiership side to make the Europa League second qualifying round by conquering Differdange 03.

Hopes were raised that another title bid could be in the offing but performances have failed to strike fear into opponents. Boss Gerard Lyttle knows his men must start delivering, starting with a difficult assignment at Ballinamallard United today (3pm).

"As a manager, I can talk about philosophies, systems, formations and tactics as much as I want but, first and foremost, it comes down to hard work," Lyttle told the club's website. "When players are sent out onto the pitch, it's down to them to show how much they want it by giving it everything they have.

"You can't underestimate any team or treat anyone differently - you need to be dedicated to everything, from your build-up, your mental approach, your attitude, the work you're going to put in and then, once you've done that, you play your game.

"It all starts with hard work. The way we played last week wasn't acceptable and I've told the players that."

Striker Jay Donnelly goes into the game lifted by the news he has been selected in the Northern Ireland Under-21 squad for forthcoming games against Iceland and Macedonia.

Belfast Telegraph


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