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Gibson set to seal loan switch to Stangmore

By Stuart McKinley

Dungannon Swifts are about to change tack in their bid to sign Glentoran striker Richard Gibson.

Stangmore Park boss Darren Murphy had made an official approach to the Glens for the muscular Gibson, but so far they have been unable to do a deal to secure the services of the man whose two goals in the east-Belfast club’s reserve team’s Steel & Sons Cup final won him the man-of-the-match award.

It is understood that Gibson, who is out of contract in the summer, isn’t prepared to leave The Oval unless another club can match his wages or an agreement can be reached with the Glens.

That has left the Swifts to explore the option of taking the 28-year-old on-loan until the end of the season, with the possibility of the two clubs each paying a portion of Gibson’s wage.

And with Glentoran manager Eddie Patterson needing to move players out before he can make any new signings, he may be happy with such an arrangement.

Even though Patterson’s squad has been badly hit by injuries in recent weeks and he has had teenagers on the bench, the former Coleraine and Ballymena United hitman has only made two appearances for the Glens this season — the last of those in a scoreless draw against the Bannsiders at The Oval in mid-September.

A return for Gibson to the Sky Blues has also been muted.

Leaving Stangmore Park is striker Stephen O’Neill. The former Cliftonville man is expected to make a return to Donegal Celtic, where he played during the 2008-09 season.

O’Neill was placed on the transfer list by the Swifts a couple of weeks ago, after falling out of favour at the club and with James Costello signing from Ballymena United he fell every further down the pecking order than he had been.--

Lisburn Distillery and Portadown will make a third attempt to play their postponed Danske Bank Premiership game on Tuesday January 29.

The match, originally scheduled for Saturday December 22, was wiped out again last night due to a waterlogged pitch at Ballyskeagh.

Belfast Telegraph


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