Belfast Telegraph

Rathfriland Rangers manager Fraser knows how to mastermind an upset

By Martin Mawhinney

Alan Fraser knows a thing or two when it comes to upsets in the Irish Cup.

And that’s why the Rathfriland Rangers manager fancies his team’s chances of a place in round six of this season’s competition.

To do that the Amateur League 1B side must overcome Belfast Telegraph Championship 1 high flyers Institute, but Fraser has previous when it comes to these things.

He has been on both ends of cup shocks, winning the trophy when he guided Glenavon to victory over Linfield 21 years ago, as well as being in the Blues team that were beaten by Carrick Rangers in 1976. He also played in another four finals with Linfield, winning two and was in the Carrick team that lost to Ballymena United in the 1984 decider.

“I’m long enough in this game to know that everything doesn’t always go according to plan,” said Fraser.

“Anything is possible.”

The problem for Fraser in his mission to add another chapter to his Irish Cup story is that three of his most experienced players, all brothers, are missing.

He must do without ex-Portadown winger Paul Evans, former Glenavon midfielder Ally and younger brother Ryan, who spent some time with Lisburn Distillery, are out, while ex-Northern Ireland schoolboy international Kevin Henry has left the club.

“I would feel a lot more confident of causing an upset if we were going there at full strength,” said Fraser.

Rathfriland will look to another ex-Irish League player. Ally Wilson — whose goal for Loughgall gave them victory in their first ever senior game — has over 30 goals this season.

Belfast Telegraph


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