GLENAVON must learn from their defensive mistakes if they are to beat Ballinamallard this weekend.
The Blues host The Mallards who beat them 2-1 under two months ago and boss Gary Hamilton is keen to make sure his team don’t make the same defensive errors.
Ryan Campbell opened the scoring last time out with Glenavon’s back-line nowhere near the quick forward and Hamilton knows that no such lapses can be afforded this weekend.
“They have a lot of pace up front and that caught us out a bit last time,” said Hamilton.
“They break quickly and they caused us problems with that but hopefully we can defend against it this time.
“We’ve been doing well defensively lately. We had to change our system in the second half against Donegal Celtic and we struggled a bit then but our new formation has worked well.
“Hopefully we can continue that and cope with them on Saturday. If we can cope with players like Peter Thompson, Matthew Tipton and Brian McCaul then there’s no reason why we can’t cope with Ballinamallard.”
Glenavon have indeed looked more solid at the back lately and more threatening going forward as well as the change to a 4-5-1 seems to be working wonders. However, Hamilton knows that they’ll need to perform to their best on Saturday to beat a Ballinamallard side still flying high, with double Glenavon’s points tally and in third place in the league.
“We’re playing well at the minute,” added the boss. “Whenever we have everyone back and fit, we’re able to compete with anyone in this league and we showed that against Linfield.
“Ballinamallard are going well but they’ve picked up a few bad results lately. If we can take advantage of that this weekend then we have a good chance. If the boys can put in the same application and attitude that they have in the last couple of weeks then there’s a good chance that we can come away with the three points.”
The Mallards have won just one of their last five games and Hamilton says that it is through their reaction to that poor form that their true colours will show:
“Newly promoted teams come up with a lot of confidence and can start off well but it’s whenever they suffer a few defeats that you see the real deal. Whitey Anderson has done a great job there and they will survive, there’s no doubt about that. However, the big test for them will come if they have a run of defeats. Then we’ll see how they react to it.”
That remains to be seen with them.”
The Glenavon boss has a selection dilemma for Saturday’s game with influential midfielder Ciaran Doherty returning to fitness. Sean McCashin deputised on Saturday and impressed in an unfamiliar midfield role. Hamilton says he has yet to decide which of the two will get the nod on Saturday afternoon.
He said: “It’s a decision we’ll have to make. We don’t change a winning team and we could and should have won on Saturday. The fact is that we didn’t though and Ciaran had been doing well. He’s one of our top players and is a key player in creating chances and scoring for us.
“But then Sean came in and did excellently on Saturday. He did a job for the team and that’s the other side of the coin. We’ll have to make a decision on that this week.”