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I'm still up for the fight, says Glens boss Patterson

By Graham Luney

Published 10/10/2015

Under fire: Glens boss Eddie Patterson has been warned that performances must improve
Under fire: Glens boss Eddie Patterson has been warned that performances must improve

The future of one Big Two boss has been resolved this week - now another insists he's still got the appetite to fight on.

Glentoran have struggled to hit top gear under Eddie Patterson this season and a 2-0 defeat at home to Ballinamallard United last weekend has cranked up the pressure.

Patterson was informed by Glens chairman Stephen Henderson that the club's board were hoping for a better start to the Danske Bank Premiership campaign than three wins in 10 outings leaving them in seventh spot.

The former Cliftonville boss, who agreed a one-year contract extension in May, is determined to guide the Glentoran ship to calmer waters and a victory at Windsor Park this afternoon would represent a timely boost.

Even though Warren Feeney has quit the Blues to become John Sheridan's assistant at League Two side Newport County - leaving Andy Todd and Alfie Wylie in temporary charge - Patterson knows the league leaders have enough strength to keep him on the ropes.

"When results are not good the Board want answers and I can understand that," said Patterson.

"Myself and the coaching staff have been taking another look at what we are doing, including on training nights and we are introducing new methods that will hopefully improve the players' performances.

"It was important that we re-analysed what we were doing both as a management team and with the players.

"We have chatted to the players and everyone understands that we have got to be more consistent.

"What we need is to have everyone fit and available for selection as well as a little luck.

"With regard to this game I don't believe that Warren Feeney leaving Linfield will have any bearing on the match.

"It will still be a very difficult test for us and Linfield will be as committed as always.

"The preparation is the same going into the match and the players want to impress.

"Linfield are top of the league and will give us a tough game. These big games look after themselves and you expect the players available to play to step up to the plate.

"We need to get a few more players back as we haven't has a settled back four and all the changes have disrupted us from the start of the season.

"With all the chopping and changing we have been hot and cold, when we get one player back we lose two and it's frustrating.

"David Howland is waiting to see a specialist and needs a minor operation."

Glentoran's squad has been ravaged by injury and suspension this season, with the rearguard in particular changing as often as the wind direction around the national football stadium.

In another twist to the Glentoran story this season their former starlet Jordan Stewart has been struggling to overcome homesickess following his switch to Swindon Town.

Patterson added: "I spoke to Jordan's father and the news he has not settled well at Swindon is concerning.

"He was staying in a hotel and I felt it would have been better for him to have his own accommodation where his family could have stayed with him as Jordan is very much a homebird.

"I would love to see him back in a Glentoran shirt and there was a part of me hoping that we could get him loaned back to us from Swindon, but the homesickness is there and let's hope he gets back to enjoying his football again as soon as possible."

If Linfield slip up against their old enemy, champions Crusaders, who are two points adrift, can hit the summit.

Stephen Baxter's side face basement battlers Warrenpoint Town - who have only won once so far - at Seaview.

Portadown host Ballymena United, who were unbeaten in seven games before last Saturday, while Coleraine travel to Carrick Rangers.

Belfast Telegraph

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