North West delight for Institute's Gareth Brown

Institute's Jack Bradley runs over to congratulate Gareth Brown, after his stunning goal against Coleraine
Institute's Jack Bradley runs over to congratulate Gareth Brown, after his stunning goal against Coleraine

Institute’s Gareth Brown did concede that he talked about trying to score from long range, before Saturday’s encounter with table toppers Coleraine.

The 27-year-old has a contender for the goal of the month, as his long range strike caught out Bannsiders goalkeeper Chris Johns.

“I did say to Joe (McCready) at the start, that Johns was a wee bit small in those nets, yes he’s a brilliant keeper, but I thought someone should maybe have a go, but I didn’t say I was going to hit it, I said to Joe did he fancy hitting a long range strike, but it turned out that it was me who hit it,” he explained.

"I just looked up and had a whack. I just fancied it from far out and thankfully for me it went in.”

The front man knows how important a win over the Bannsiders is for the ’Stute’s survival hopes and he was happy that all his hard work in recent weeks paid off with a goal.

“To be fair those draws, were all bonus points for us, but we were still disappointed over the last few weeks that we were only getting draws, but today’s win is a big plus for us, coming from where we are in the league,” he added.

“However we always knew that after all those draws, we were going to turn one of them into a win and we were going to get there in the end up, which thankfully we did against Coleraine.

“I’m just digging in every game, working hard and I’ll just put a shift in every time and the boys have been telling me that they have been disappointed that I haven’t got a goal, as my hard work has deserved a goal, so hopefully my luck is turning. Myself and the boys just need to keep going.”

Brown believes that ’Stute have produced their best performances this season against sides further up the table and that was evident again on Saturday.

“Look if our 11 or 13 players are at it, every week, we’ll match anybody in the league,” he insisted.

“We just need everybody to be at 100 per cent every game for us to be competiting, because we will compete with sides.”

Next up for the Waterside men is a trip to Crusaders in the Bet McLean League Cup semi-final on Tuesday night and Brown is already looking forward to try and upset the odds again.

“Tuesday night’s game is another bonus game for us,” he confirmed. “Everybody thinks Crusaders are going to beat us but we know in our changing room, that we are capable of beating anybody on any day,

“So we’ll go there on Tuesday night and look to give our all again and hopefully that will be enough to beat them.

“We have competed all season and have actually competed better again all the top six teams.

“I said that to the boys in the changing room after the game, that we would love to play teams in the top six, because we seem to be at our best when we play them,

“So hopefully on Tuesday night we can go and give it a good go and hopefully we’ll have a bit of luck up there as well.”