Belfast Telegraph

Coleraine will fancy themselves to do the double: McFall

By Steven Beacom

Glentoran boss Ronnie McFall claims his team will face a Coleraine side tonight so high in confidence that they will feel they can win the league and Irish Cup double.

McFall may have been out of the management scene for a couple of years before taking charge at The Oval last month but it's clear the wily old fox has not lost the capability of mind games.

Like a legendary manager he has great admiration for, Sir Alex Ferguson, McFall has used psychology to his advantage throughout his successful career.

Ahead of this evening's Tennent's Irish Cup quarter-final at Coleraine, he has placed the pressure on the Bannsiders, who are now just two points behind league leaders Crusaders.

While the Crues were losing 3-1 at Cliftonville, Oran Kearney's men were winning 2-0 at derby rivals Ballymena United.

Coleraine have been impressive all season and, since McFall's arrival last month at The Oval as interim manager, the east Belfast outfit have been showing fine form themselves. They have seven points out of nine, with a 2-2 draw at Glenavon on Saturday the latest positive result.

McFall will continue his side's bid to finish in the top six in the Danske Bank Premiership away to Linfield in four days but this evening it is knockout action.

"It's a massive game. With the way the results went at the weekend, they will obviously fancy themselves to do the double," stated McFall. "We are something like 30 points behind them so it will be a huge ask but we will give it our best shot.

"We couldn't have a more difficult week, first going away to Glenavon, then Coleraine in the Irish Cup and after that playing Linfield at Windsor Park.

"Hopefully though we are giving the fans a lift with our performances and results and what we aim to do is keep it going."

The influential John McGuigan is in line to start if fit. He was superb in the draw at Glenavon, scoring and creating havoc after coming off the bench.

At the start of the season it was that type of form that led to Gary Haveron's Glentoran making a real impact but injury to McGuigan didn't help the cause of the manager or the team.

McFall knows just how useful McGuigan is to the Glens.

"Against Glenavon, John came on and made an impact. He linked up play and scored a good goal," said McFall. "We all know he has that ability. He has been out injured a long time so it will take him a while to get up to match fitness but John has quality and can be an important player for the rest of the season."

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