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Newry boss McDonnell gives squad a chance

John McDonnell is on the hunt for new faces — but he won’t enter the transfer market to bolster his Newry City side without first seeing what the current squad can do.

McDonnell is challenging the panel he inherited from Gerry Flynn to force him to stick by them, rather than patiently waiting for New Year’s Day, when he can go about signing his own players.

“I spoke to the chairman this week about players becoming available and he has said that if they are the right players we’ll try to find the money to bring them in,” said McDonnell.

“There are players coming out of contract and some who were out of contract during the last transfer window, but I am being fair to the players that are here, giving them the chance to prove themselves and allowing them to show me what they can do out on the pitch.

“We’ve added an extra night’s training as we try to have more of a full-time mentality and the commitment of the players has been excellent which has pleased me a lot.”

Without a win in the three games since he took over, McDonnell will look for his first three points at Dungannon Swifts tomorrow.

“I know Institute isn’t an easy place to go, but we could and should have won the game last Saturday and it will be very difficult at Dungannon,” he said.

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