Annagh out to stop the rot with winning start to March

Dean Smith. 'Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Dean Smith. 'Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Annagh United will attempt to move on from February’s failure with a much-needed March win tomorrow (Saturday) against Ballyclare Comrades.

Consecutive defeats last month to Ards, Lurgan Celtic, Lisburn Distillery and Larne have left Annagh dropping down the Championship One league standings.

Hopes of avoiding relegation from a first season in the Irish League’s second-tier setting could gain a boost with a return to form this weekend.

Annagh hit the road to take on Ballyclare aware that defeat to the hosts would result in another slip.

As it stands, Annagh sit as one of five sides on 21 points, with Ballyclare two behind in the table.

However, no other Championship One side has played more league fixtures than Annagh and manager Dean Smith is aware of the need for a stop to the rot.

“We have always had faith in the individual ability at this club but need our big players to find form,” said the Annagh boss. “Injuries, suspensions and unavailability have left us short of experience but we hope to have three, four or five on the way back over the next few games.

“We have made moves to bring quite a few young players to the club for Annagh’s future but it is difficult to expect inexperienced players to step into a side in great numbers and produce.

“Against Larne last Friday we lost out but came up against a side with numerous players of top-flight standard.

“We got punished for certain individual errors but must accept those mistakes as a group and move forward.

“Our big-impact players coming back can make a difference and allow us to continue to develop youth but by integrating one or two alongside more experienced names.

“That will prove more beneficial for everyone compared to throwing in large numbers and expecting those players to make a difference in games.”