Injured Clanachan and Tolan to miss holiday fixtures
Coleraine manager Marty Quinn has been rocked by the news that two of his most experienced players will miss the entire Christmas and New Year period.
Stewart Clanachan is ruled out after suffering a back injury in the warm-up prior to Saturday's game with Portadown, which saw him replaced in the starting eleven by Noel Anderson.
And a further blow has now hit after striker Jody Tolan, who was substituted against the Ports, has been diagnosed with a knee ligament injury.
Both men will miss Saturday's trip to Armagh City and the home derby with Ballymena United on Boxing Day, which is followed by a trip to Dungannon Swifts, a home game with Larne on New Year's Day.
"We got a good point against Portadown on Saturday and I am hoping we can build on that, but with injuries hitting us it is going to be hard," said Quinn.
" Stewart Clanachan is improving day by day, but he is still in pain after pulling a muscle in his back and it will be at least a couple of weeks before he is able to play again. Jody Tolan has injured his medial ligament and I could have done without losing a striker at this stage of the season with so many games coming up."
Quinn is hoping that the pair may be back in time to face Lisburn Distillery on the first Saturday of 2005. Striker Davy Patton is almost certain to miss Saturday's game at Armagh, but should be available for the Boxing Day game.
"Davy has slight concussion and medical advice will probably mean he won't play on Saturday," said Quinn. "With Jody Tolan out too it's not an ideal situation for me, but it will give a chance to Damien Whitehead who has been pushing for a recall."