Belfast Telegraph

Ballinamallard United manager Whitey reeling at double dose of woe

By Graham Luney

Whitey Anderson's love affair with football has been severely tested by a four-day long nightmare.

Whatever therapy the Ballinamallard United boss had in mind after watching his side crash to a 11-0 defeat to Portadown, it certainly wasn't watching Northern Ireland stumble to a shock 3-2 defeat in Luxembourg.

The Whites boss was among the Green and White Army at the Stade Josy Barthel Stadium but the rain failed to wash away the painful memories of the horror show at Shamrock Park.

Anderson was so upset at his side's capitulation in mid-Ulster that he couldn't find the words to express his emotions afterwards and a trip to Luxembourg failed to lighten his mood.

"What a wonderful four days of football that was," said the Mallards chief. "I went to my first competitive Northern Ireland match away from home and between Saturday and Tuesday it wasn't too nice."

Northern Ireland suffered an all time low on Tuesday but Anderson had already beaten his country to that feeling.

"It was very tough to take, without question," he said. "It was a huge low. We conceded three in five minutes of pure madness and I have never seen our team lose their shape in the way they did. We conceded six headed goals and it was so uncharacteristic of us. In the last 20 minutes you felt that every ball that came into the box would lead to a goal.

"People can say 'you've just lost three points' but it's more than that. No-one had ever torn us apart like this before. It showed how ruthless this league can be. Our performance was simply unacceptable."

The United supremo feels sorry for the supporters who were in good voice even after the nightmare unfolded and he hopes his players can repay them with a scintillating performance at Coleraine tomorrow.

"I really felt for the fans who travelled to support the club and have worked so hard to be with us on this journey," he added.

"From the first minute to the last they were terrific and we need to produce a performance on Saturday that the fans deserve. If we can't respond to what happened last week then where are we going? I believe the players will show character and we will come out fighting.

"It's my job to lift the players – I'm up for the fight."

Belfast Telegraph

Daily News Headlines Newsletter

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox.


From Belfast Telegraph