Belfast Telegraph

Swifts must aim for perfect run-in to reach the Euro play-offs: Hughes

 

Adrian Rutherford

By Adrian Rutherford

Daniel Hughes has said Dungannon have to attempt to win all their remaining games to secure a shot at Europe.

The Swifts have seven more matches, starting at Mid-Ulster rivals Glenavon this afternoon.

They are targeting seventh, which would secure a play-off for Europa League qualification.

Three teams are realistically in the hunt - the Swifts, Glentoran and Institute - and are separated by just one point. Institute also have a game in hand.

"Seventh is our aim and we want to try and get into that European play-off spot," the striker said. "The only way to do that is to set the target of trying to win every single game between now and the end of the season.

"If you do get into a European play-off spot, and you're lucky enough to win that play-off, it is beneficial to the club.

"We'll just take one game at a time but that's where our sights are set for the end of the season."

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Dungannon face Glenavon and Linfield before the split. Then, in April, they will play the five other teams in the bottom half.

"Every game will be difficult," said Hughes. "If we're playing teams around the bottom, they will be fighting for everything. Even in mid-table, in this league you have something to play for."

Hughes scored the winner as Dungannon came from behind to beat Newry 2-1 last weekend.

After losing to Institute, then Ballinamallard in the Irish Cup, he admits it was important to bounce back with three points.

"It was a big win after the last two games," he added. "We needed to get the mood lifted again."

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