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Michael McCrudden is staying at Stute despite Coleraine links, vows McLaughlin



Wanted man: Institute captain Michael McCrudden

Wanted man: Institute captain Michael McCrudden

Wanted man: Institute captain Michael McCrudden

Institute manager Paddy McLaughlin insists that captain Michael McCrudden will not be leaving the club in January despite growing interest in the striker.

Rather than lose their biggest name player, Institute are determined to persuade him to sign a new contract.

McLaughlin and the club have already done smart business this month by agreeing 18-month extensions with Dean Curry, Ronan Doherty, Colm McLaughlin, Caoimhin Bonner and Aaron Jarvis to their current deals.

The future of McCrudden, who has scored an impressive 10 league goals this season, is also on the agenda, with Coleraine linked to a move for the front man.

"I'm sure there are other clubs keen on him because he has been top drawer for us, though hopefully we can get Michael sorted next," said McLaughlin.

"He is one of the top scorers in the league and I'm not surprised there would be interest in him, but I'm adamant there are no players leaving the club in January."

Institute unluckily lost 3-2 at Crusaders and drew 3-3 at Glenavon in their previous two league matches, but tomorrow Glentoran are the visitors to the Brandywell.

"It is great to see Glentoran coming back to the Brandywell to play in the Irish League," said McLaughlin, well aware that victory would see 'Stute leapfrog the Glens into seventh in the table.

"We are looking forward to welcoming them but hopefully we can get three points. We understand they have quality players and, maybe a bit like ourselves, have been playing well recently but haven't got the wins to back up their performances.

"We were delighted with the two performances we put in away to two title contenders. The work-rate and quality on the ball in the last two matches has been fantastic but it is all about getting points on the board.

"It is a tough league and we have to be playing at the top of our game all the time to do that."

Belfast Telegraph