INSTITUTE: Young and old stand tall in defence

Young defender Cathal Connolly (right) took to senior football like a duck to water at Lurgan Celtic, on Saturday.

Young defender Cathal Connolly (right) took to senior football like a duck to water at Lurgan Celtic, on Saturday.

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Institute boss Kevin Deery felt that both Paddy McLaughlin and Cathal Connolly played their part in their 2-2 draw at Lurgan Celtic, on Saturday.

With centre-back’s Stephen O’Donnell, Mark Scoltock and Darryl McDermott all missing, McLaughlin had to don the jersey for the first time in over 12 months, while young defender Connolly got his first start for Deery’s side and both players fitted in well.

“I tried to build my team around missing defenders so I had to try and find the best solutions to replace the best defence in the league and I felt with Paddy going in there his experience would help us,” said Deery.

“I felt I needed a couple of young bodies around him to do his running and that’s not a bad thing to say about him, but he hasn’t played in a year and although he tired a little in the second half, he never looked out of place.

“It’s a great testament to him that when I asked him about playing he said ‘Deerso no bother I’ll go in and play’ and a year without football to go in and do a job like that was a credit to him.

“Cathal is only a young man and for anyone at 18 or 19 years old, physically they aren’t developed where they should be and we know that this division is about physical attributes but he stepped up to the mark and done really well.

“But now he needs go and work at his game and realise that if I’m good enough and work hard enough what’s to stop me from getting another opportunity at playing senior football at this club.”