Belfast Telegraph

Sky cameras will inspire Glentoran to another big performance, says McDaid


High expectations: Robbie McDaid acknowledges that Glentoran are under pressure to win tonight
High expectations: Robbie McDaid acknowledges that Glentoran are under pressure to win tonight
Jonny Frazer

By Alex Mills

Striker Robbie McDaid insists complacency will not be an issue in tonight's Danske Bank Premiership showdown with Institute at the Oval.

The east Belfast side approach the game on the back of a stirring comeback against Ballymena United and confident midweek League Cup victory over Ballyclare Comrades.

McDaid was the late two-goal hero form that win at The Showgrounds and he stresses it's important to maintain the winning momentum against a side that has picked up only one point from four starts.

"It was a big win at Ballymena and it's important to build on that," he says.

"With respect to Glenavon and Coleraine, that was probably the biggest test we've had so far. But we are now three or four games in, so everyone is up and running and match fit.

"It was a little bit similar to the Coleraine match. We were trailing, but we showed a lot of character to battle back to get something from the game.

"I think that's also a big thing about us this season - we've been scoring goals late on, rather than conceding them."

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Mick McDermott's boys will go into tonight's clash as hot favourites and McDaid believes they will thrive on that pressure.

"It will be a different dynamic for us because we'll be expected to win," he adds.

"It's something we'll manage, we'll be professional about it.

"We've now had two wins on the bounce, so we have momentum. It's good for our confidence and good for our minds.

"It's also on television so that will give it a bit of added spice. Every player wants to showcase himself and play on the biggest platform, so we know there will be a lot more eyes on us, which will bring a bit of added pressure.

"It's important we get the job done. We'll certainly not be taking Institute lightly. They did very well in the league last season and, even though they've lost a few players this year, they are still a capable side."

Glens boss McDermott made nine changes for the Ballyclare game and Jonny Frazer certainly staked a claim for a starting shirt against Institute after bagging a hat-trick.

"We now have a squad of around 23 or 24 players, who are capable of playing in the first team," adds McDaid.

"That's the difference this year, the boss can make eight or nine changes to the side and it is not affected. He did that for our last game against Ballyclare Comrades and we were excellent, especially in the first half.

"Jonny came in and got a hat-trick and he certainly gave the boss something to think about.

"That's what he is all about. He's an enthusiastic, bubbly character and he has a lot of quality.

"It's a luxury we haven't had in recent seasons. We all know we have been short of numbers over the past few years, probably since I arrived at the club.

"But we have a lot of quality around the squad now. It's important for the players who have the first team shirt to keep doing the business because there are plenty of lads waiting for the chance."

McDaid also has a personal aim - to better last season's goal tally.

He explains: "My aim is to better the 16 I got last season. The year before that, in my first year at the club, I hit 11.

"So if I can better 16, I'll put that down as progress - I want to improve year on year. I've now a different role, playing a bit wider on either the right or left. But it's all good for my development.

"As long as we are winning games and climbing the table, I'm happy enough."

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