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Heads up: Mark Clarke looks on as team-mate Jonny Addis challenges Ballymena United striker Gary Liggett in the air

Heads up: Mark Clarke looks on as team-mate Jonny Addis challenges Ballymena United striker Gary Liggett in the air

©Russell Pritchard / Presseye

Heads up: Mark Clarke looks on as team-mate Jonny Addis challenges Ballymena United striker Gary Liggett in the air

Glentoran 0 Ballymena United 0: Glentoran goalkeeper Elliott Morris admits his team have adopted a new philosophy – 'if we can't win games, we'll not lose them'.

The 32-year-old prevented Eddie Patterson's boys from slumping to their third successive defeat by producing an inspirational second half performance to deny battling Ballymena United three Premier League points at the Oval.

Following two heavy defeats by Crusaders and Cliftonville, Morris was determined to stop the flow of goals after conceding seven in those previous two outings.

"We were disappointed the way we performed over the past few weeks and my aim was to keep a clean sheet against Ballymena," said Morris.

"I had four clean sheets before the Crusaders match. It all went wrong for two games when we conceded seven. It was just not good enough.

"Defensively we were good against Ballymena. Our attitude now is if we can't win games, we'll not lose them."

Glens boss Patterson pulled striker Jonny Addis into the centre of defence to partner Jay Magee. They were flanked by Ryan O'Neill and Jason Hill.

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"It was the first time the back four had played together – it worked well," added Morris. "Ballymena did catch us a few times on the counter-attack but, thankfully, I managed to keep them out.

"Unfortunately, we struggled at the other end of the pitch. We are lacking a cutting edge; that has been the story of our season.

"I think once we get our two strikers going, we'll be ok. That was Aaron Boyd's second game for the club while Mark Miskimmin is just back from injury.

"It will take them a bit of time to gel but I think those boys will score goals.

"People need to realise how bad things were last year in terms of budget cuts. We are doing our best with the squad we have.

"There was a lot of quality went out the door over the summer – first team regulars that are difficult to replace. So it will take time for everyone to adapt.

"We didn't get the win we wanted against Ballymena, but I was just delighted to stop the flow of goals after watching seven go past me over the last two games."

Glentoran could have pinched the points in stoppage time, but United's Johnny Taylor somehow managed to stop David Scullion's shot on the goal line before blocking Boyd's follow up.

"It was pleasing to keep a clean sheet," said United boss Glenn Ferguson. "I though we were great defensively. Everyone of the boys stood up to the challenge – epitomised by what Johnny did right at the end.

"Had we left with all three points and I don't think anyone would have argued.

"We've had a difficult run of games . . . Portadown, Cliftonville, Linfield and Glentoran. Apart from our result against the Blues, I think we've done really well.

"Had I been offered four draws before those matches, I'd have taken it. We've picked up four points, so in a round-about way I have to be satisfied."


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