Institute: Paddy McLaughlin searching for defensive strength to tackle Ards

Institute manager Paddy McLaughlin says his players need to become more solid defensively as they prepare to host bottom side Ards on Boxing Day.

Monday, 24th December 2018, 1:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 10th January 2019, 10:51 am
Pacemaker - Belfast - -03/12/2018. Picture by Dessie Loughery/Pacemaker Press Institute v Coleraine Danske Bank Premiership Institute Aaron Jarvis and Coleriane Stephen lowry during today's game at The Brandywell Stadium Derry

McLaughlin, who was frustrated after his side’s impressive 6-4 win over Cliftonville on Saturday, believes that while his team are entertaining on the front foot, they need to tighten things up at the back.

“We know ourselves we’ve got to be better,” he insisted. “We have to use our experience and our game management a lot better because we made the Cliftonville match a game right to the end when it shouldn’t have been.

“The important thing was that we won the match but Boxing Day against Ards is another massive game. To be honest they are all massive games.

Ards boss Colin Nixon. Pic by Pacemaker.

“The boys are in a great place at the moment in terms of football. Some of the stuff they are playing at the minute is fantastic but we definitely have got to tighten up defensively.

“Look it’s great whenever we are praising our strikers for scoring fantastic goals, but you can’t neglect our defensive duties as well and I think we have done that against Cliftonville a few times.”

Going into the game, ’Stute welcome back duo Caoimhin Bonner and Aaron Jarvis from suspension.

As for Ards boss Colin Nixon, he feels his players need to get a result this afternoon.

“I told the boys to go and enjoy Christmas and look after themselves and prepare for a massive game at the Brandywell on Boxing Day - a game we must get something out of,” he stated. “I see they scored six today where I can’t see my boys scoring six in six weeks. We’ve got to keep plugging away but our lack of goals is terrible.”