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Larne’s Euro tie is what dreams are made of for fans and they can help us beat Bala Town, says Tiernan Lynch


Vocal support: Tiernan Lynch says the fans can play a huge part at Inver Park tonight

Vocal support: Tiernan Lynch says the fans can play a huge part at Inver Park tonight

Vocal support: Tiernan Lynch says the fans can play a huge part at Inver Park tonight

Larne boss Tiernan Lynch believes the club’s vocal supporters have a vital role to play in the club’s first European tie at Inver Park tonight.

The Invermen take a 1-0 lead into their second Europa Conference League encounter with Bala Town (7.30pm) when around 800 fans are expected to roar on the home side.

David McDaid’s early goal gave the European play-off winners a one-goal cushion ahead of their return match but the job must be finished tonight to steer the club to more European history.

Fans are starting to return to stadiums in bigger numbers now that Covid-19 restrictions have eased and their presence at venues up and down the country will no longer be taken for granted.

“More fans are coming to the games and with this being our first European tie at Inver Park it’s a very special night for everyone involved,” said Lynch.

“Ultimately, this is what it’s about.

“The fans have never had this opportunity before and they are hugely excited.

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“This is what a lot of dreams are made of – watching their home town club playing European football and thankfully we have been able to give them that.

“Their support is always vital, we talk about it a lot, they are definitely our 12th man and when they give us their vocal backing they make a massive difference.

“I think they will play a major part in this game.

“I’m very hopeful a sense of normality is returning and it was great to see fans in big numbers watching the Euro 2020 matches. That’s what football is all about in my opinion.”

Larne are quietly confident they can complete their first European mission this evening but it will take another impressive performance to get it over the line.

“This is an extremely difficult game and I don’t think this tie is over,” argued Lynch.

“This team have a lot of talented players, they have a big strong physical side and they are a major threat with set pieces.

“I’ve told the players if we aren’t at our best we will struggle.

“We must be fully focused and work very hard to take anything from it.

“I know Uefa have scrapped the away goals rule but for me, it’s not something I give a lot of thought to.

“We must perform to go through.”

A first qualifying round win for Larne would set up a tasty tie against Denmark’s AGF Aarhus, with Larne at home in the first leg.

Lynch has a fully fit squad at his disposal and he’s encouraged by the balance and quality in his panel.

“I think we are in a good place,” he says.

“We would still like to strengthen and bring one or two in through the door but we are very pleased with the business we have done up to now.

“There are challenges to the transfer market and it’s been a fairly slow window but I’m still of the opinion things will start to move a bit as we move closer to the season.

“The business should pick up as the domestic season comes upon us.”

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