INSTITUTE: Waterside men start home run against Knockbreda

Institute's Jamie McIntyre skips past H&W Welders skipper William Armstrong. INLS0816-105KM
Institute's Jamie McIntyre skips past H&W Welders skipper William Armstrong. INLS0816-105KM

Institute boss Kevin Deery is hoping it will be home sweet home for his side over the next few weeks.

The Waterside men face Knockbreda this Saturday (KO 3pm) in the first of five games coming up at the Riverside Stadium.

They then face Lisburn Distillery, Dergview and Armagh City all in the league with Newington in the Intermediate Cup sandwiched in between and with so many games coming up Deery also admits that the groundsman Arthur Hiscox will be working hard.

“We’re home to Knockbreda and the boys will no doubt get confidence from the win and performance against the Welders,” he said.

“We’ll get Arthur working hard at the pitch again because that’s vital to the way we play.

“We like to play between the lines with our creative players so we need to get on top of that pitch and beat Knockbreda and then we’ll be nine points off second place.”

Deery also concedes that he wants his players to keep the recent momentum going and he hopes they have found their shooting boots as they have scored 11 goals in their last three games.

“Since the turn of the year we are the form team in the league and that has been super,” he added.

“We have managed to get 10 points from our last four league games, which is a good return considering that Ards, Bangor and the Welders were three of those four fixtures, so I’m hoping the confidence we 
took from the Welders result we can take into this weekend’s game.

“I’m looking for the same level of performance against Knockbreda as we did against the Welders and that’s what I’ll be asking for again this week, for all 11 players who start the game to be really at it.

“We spoke about the goals for column which was letting us down but we’ve started to pick up in that and we also kept another clean sheet which keeps us having the best defensive record in the division.

“If we keep tight at the back we’ll get our rewards up at the other end of the pitch.”

Unfortunately Niall Grace is missing this week because of a family commitment, while Sean Roddy and Aaron Harkin are carrying knocks, but Deery expects everyone to be fit and able.

“Niall has a family wedding to attend in Cork this weekend, so automatically we’ll have to make one change, while Sean and Aaron are struggling with a few knocks, but hopefully they will be fine,” he said.

“But I keep preaching to the players who aren’t in at the minute that they have played a lot of games and it will turn again.

“All the players have to realise that it will be a thick and fast run-in and everyone will be needed.

“You need competition for places and as manager I want the players to react in the right way, because we are definitely on the right track and I feel there’s a good opportunity for us to push on with these run of home fixtures, but we need everyone pushing in the right direction.

“It’s a squad game and everyone has had an input already, we have a great 20 odd players in the squad I just want everyone to stay focused, give their all in training and their chance will come.”