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Darren Mullen prepared for another tough test to keep Newry top of Championship standings



Newry boss Darren Mullen. Credit: David Maginnis

Newry boss Darren Mullen. Credit: David Maginnis


Newry boss Darren Mullen. Credit: David Maginnis

Newry City manager Darren Mullen has warned his players that today’s trip to Queen’s will be every bit as difficult as their top of the table showdown with Ards last week.

On that occasion it was Newry who came out on top to make it five wins out of five in the Lough 41 Championship moving three points clear of Ards.

Now Mullen wants his side to make it six of the best at the Dub versus Peter Thompson’s team and maintain their perfect start to the season

“This game will be every bit as difficult as Ards last week,” said the Newry boss.

“Peter Thompson has done a terrific job at Queen’s and although they have had a few defeats they have always been a tough side for us to play against.”

The Newry fans generated a super atmosphere at the Showgrounds in the 2-1 victory over Ards and Mullen is keen that the travelling City support roar his players on again.

“What I’m urging fans to do is try to recreate some of the atmosphere from last Friday night as I know how much it meant to the players. We really need them more than they realise so hopefully we can match their efforts on the pitch,” said Mullen.

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A key figure to date for Newry has been midfielder Thomas Lockhart who has been named Championship Player of the Month for August on the back of producing impressive displays and three goals from the middle of the park.

Lockhart said, “I’m delighted to be selected as Player of the Month, but I’m even more pleased with the start we’ve had to the season. It’s early days, but we’ve put together a very competitive team and we’re capable of building on our strong start.”

Having suffered their first defeat to Newry, Ards will be seeking to bounce back away to Dergview while former Cliftonville and Omagh Town ace Brian Donaghey will take charge of Institute for the first time at home to bottom club Dundela.

Donaghey has had success with Institute previously as part of the coaching team and is relishing leading the side now.

Already he has made his presence felt signing experienced goalkeeper John Connolly from Ballinamallard, Jamie Dunne from Limavady and Bradley Walsh from Finn Harps.

Elsewhere in the Championship Ballinamallard are at home to H & W Welders, Knockbreda travel to Ballyclare Comrades and third-placed Loughgall face Annagh United at Lakeview Park. l games start at 3pm.

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