Brendan out for up to eight weeks

GLENAVON captain Brendan Shannon is set to be sidelined for at least six weeks after he suffered medial ligament damage in the Ballinamallard game.

The skipper hobbled off during the closing minutes of Friday evening’s 2-1 defeat and now faces six to eight weeks out, much to his manager’s disappointment.

“Losing Brendan is a big blow for us because he’s done well since he got back into the team and has been one of our most consistent performers,” said Gary Hamilton.

Shannon may be accompanied in the stands this weekend by midfield duo Ciaran Doherty and Andy Kilmartin as the Blues could be faced with a shortage of midfielders for Saturday’s visit of Coleraine.

Doherty (knee) and Kilmartin (leg) are battling with knocks also picked up against Ballinamallard and could leave the Blues struggling in the centre of the pitch as boss Gary Hamilton has ruled out bringing in Niall Henderson, who has recently returned to training.

“Niall won’t be rushed back because he’s been out for too long,” confirmed Hamilton.

“The last thing we want is for him to come back too early and be put back to square one. That could leave us light this weekend but we’re hopeful that Doherty’s knee injury will have cleared up and Andy Kilmartin has a dead leg so he could be available as well.”

Even if the midfield duo are passed fit for the game against Coleraine, the manager is predicting alterations to his starting line-up after Glenavon suffered two successive defeats in their last outings.

“There will be changes, there’s no doubt about that,” he added.

“There’ll be one forced change with Brendan out and then we’ll just have to see who is available and take it from there because that’s two games in which we haven’t got a result.

“We didn’t do ourselves any justice last Friday so we could make a few changes. We’ll have to see what the injuries to Ciaran Doherty and Andy Kilmartin are like and then take things from there.

“We’ll have to think about the changes with regard to the Coleraine team as well. We’ll look at what options we have because we have to try and put a team out that we think can beat Coleraine.”

Shannon’s injury could allow centre-back Mark Haughey to follow his captain’s lead and make his 100th start for Glenavon this weekend as Eddie McCallion is likely to shift to right-back, paving the way for Haughey to complete his ton.