Derry date part of Loughgall progress

Gerald Boyle. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Gerald Boyle. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Loughgall manager Gerald Boyle has added a friendly with Derry City to the Villagers’ fixture list in a bid to boost players’ on-pitch minutes.

City will arrive at Lakeview Park on Tuesday as part of the recently-appointed Boyle’s desire to increase his knowledge of the squad and to hand gametime to fringe players.

Boyle is keen to use every option to maintain the momentum which has placed Loughgall third in the Championship One standings entering a weekend derby date at Lurgan Celtic.

“It will be a great opportunity to give some playing time to guys who have maybe not featured as much since I joined, although I know most of the squad,” said Boyle. “The place is buzzing at the minute and we want to keep that going, so a friendly will help bring up the matchtime across the group.

“Every player has a part to play and everyone will get a chance.

“This weekend I have Ricky Copeland out due to suspension, for example, so we need to call on everyone.

“We were unable to get a friendly arranged last weekend to fill the blank date.

“Everything becomes so much easier when the form is good and we are getting results.

“The ideas of the coaching staff comes across better, players go into games with that extra bounce and that momentum is going to play a big part in the rest of the season.

“It is about going as far as possible and this weekend’s match is another big test, given Celtic’s recent impressive form.

“However, our players have been approaching games without any fear and we want them to embrace that confidence.”

Selection for the recent Regions’ Cup trial of Warner Mullen, Daniel Ryan and Marcus Dallas confirmed the growing reputation of the Lakeview Park panel. Annagh United’s Jaime Gardiner and Adam White were also called up for the in-house friendly.

The Regions’ Cup players will also face Northern Ireland Schoolboys under 18s in a future fixture.

“I have plenty of experience with the Regions’ Cup set-up and know how beneficial an experience it can prove,” said Boyle. “It is credit to the players selected for the trial and we wish them every success.

“Warner, Daniel and Marcus can certainly take encouragement from the experience.”

Kick-off against Derry City will be 7.30, with entry £5 per adult and free for under 16s.