Belfast Telegraph

Barry Gray challenges Warrenpoint Town to embark on a hot streak

By Stuart McKinley

Barry Gray is demanding that his Warrenpoint Town players up their game if they want to compete in the Premiership.

And Gray doesn't believe that the demands he is placing on the team are unrealistic - because he has already seen what they are capable of.

Although Point have lost each of their first three games this season, the manager has been encouraged by certain aspects of their performances, but now he wants that to be extended to the full 90 minutes, rather than just short spells of matches.

"We show it in patches, which is the most frustrating thing," said Gray, ahead of tomorrow afternoon's trip to face Glentoran at The Oval.

"You can't have ability for 20 minutes and then all of a sudden be poor, regardless of the opposition.

"We've played Portadown and Glenavon in the opening weeks of the season. They are two teams who finished in the top four last season and one that has played in Europe and we've done well in both games for patches. That can't be a fluke.

"Going back to last season, we competed well in most of the games for patches, so you have to have the ability to do that consistently.

"We've done it on a consistent basis and we've continued this season in that fashion.

"The problem is how you extend that 20 or 30 minutes to 60 minutes, 90 minutes. There are very few games, going back to last season, where we can say we had that for 90 minutes."

Now in their third season of top-flight football, Gray has been down this road before with his team in terms of searching for consistency.

Their inability to put lengthy runs together was a contributing factor in them having to fight for their Premiership place in a play-off with Bangor at the end of last season.

And the excuses are now wearing thin.

"The season is only a week old but we're already making excuses that we've seen made for us last season," said Gray.

"We have plenty of experience now and we can't keep making these mistakes.

"Yeah, we're only a week in, but I said to the players, if we want to be easy on ourselves we can say 'yeah, we're only a week in'," said Gray.

"We're a week in and we're bottom of the table or thereabouts.

"Three games are gone. In another week, we might be in the same position, two weeks we might still be there.

"The record is broken here. We've heard it all before. I want to change that record and move on."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph