Coleraine title success would cap an enjoyable year at the Showgrounds for Glackin
Coleraine midfielder Jamie Glackin insists he "absolutely loves" this time of the season as the Bannsiders prepare for their third match in six days at Carrick Rangers this afternoon.
Oran Kearney's men have picked up four points from their two festive outings at home against Ballymena United and Linfield, but know they will face a difficult examination today as they kick start the New Year at the Belfast Loughshore Hotel Arena.
The north coast club remain in the hunt for their first Gibson Cup title since 1974, but Glackin, who toasted league success at Crusaders, reiterated there is still a long way to go.
"Coming into the Christmas period, results maybe hadn't gone our way and a few people were starting to question us, but we stuck together," he said.
"It would have been nice to have got the win against Linfield to keep us right up there, but there's a long way to go still.
"It was probably two points dropped against the Blues based on our second half performance. But credit to Linfield they they were the stronger team at the start of the first half.
"We came out and got our goal at the start of the second half and I thought we should have kicked on from it, but to be fair to Linfield they dug in and defended well.
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"You probably would have taken four points out of the two games beforehand as there's still a lot of football to be played."
The 24-year-old joined Coleraine last year when Rodney McAree was at the helm, but despite a change in management, the ex-Dungannon Swifts ace insists he is enjoying life on the Ballycastle Road.
"I love it here, this is like a home to me now," continued the midfielder.
"It's like it was when I was at Dungannon, and the fans have taken to me really well, they've given me great support and I can only thank them for that.
"I owe Oran a lot of thanks too because he's never off my back about getting the ball and encouraging me to get at the opposition and doing what I want.
"He has backed me to the hilt, and getting that confidence off him it gives me great belief in myself and it's paying off."
Despite a tough schedule over the festive season, Glackin insists that all players want to be involved in the big occasions with the Bannsiders.
"I love this time of the year, it's part and parcel of the game and that's all I've known," he concluded.
"It's not as if I'd be going out anyway as I'm not really into going out drinking.
"This time of the year you're playing against the top teams in front of big crowds and you want to be involved in that.
"That atmosphere in those gives you a real edge and I really do love it."