Rainey aiming for prominent role

NEW Glenavon striker David Rainey says he hasn’t joined the club to play second fiddle to the club’s current strike duo.

Guy Bates and Mark Farren were hitting top form towards the end of last season but Rainey is adamant he isn’t going to be resigned to the role of super-sub.

Rainey, 37, was released from Crusaders at the end of the season and took less than a week to join up with Glenavon.

However, after making just eight appearances for the Crues last year, the forward says he has come in search of more playing time and is confident he is not too old to nail down a starting spot.

“My main concern in joining was that there are already a lot of good players here in Gary (Hamilton), Mark Farren and Guy Bates,” he told the ‘MAIL.’

“I don’t want to come and sit on the bench like I did last year but Gary said I would get as much of a chance as anyone else. I’m confident in my own ability but it’ll be hard to come in and impress when Bates and Farren have been doing so well.

“Whenever I left Crusaders, I made it clear that I’m not ready for hanging the boots up and I feel I’ve got one or two good years left in me yet.”

Manager Gary Hamilton is understandably delighted with his coup and says he fully expects Rainey to provide stiff competition for the current front two.

“I’ve no doubt he’ll push for a starting spot and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him getting it,” he said.

“He’s outstanding. He scored a goal a game in the league last season. Even Mark Farren hasn’t done that. So he’ll bring that, he’ll bring a lot of experience and in terms of fitness, there are no doubts there.

“If he’s fit enough then age is just a number. Teddy Sheringham was still playing in the Premier League when he was 41. David’s like a kid running people down and his attitude will rub off on others.”

Although Rainey will be competing with Hamilton for a place on the pitch, the new signing says it was the boss’ long-term pursuit of his services that led him to join the club.

He said: “Gary showed a lot of interest in me last summer when Gary McCutcheon signing for Crusaders. He tried to lure me away but I decided to stay for another season and give it a go.

“Crusaders released me and Gary was straight in again so I thought it was only right to sign for Glenavon when he had shown such interest. I had spoken to a few other clubs but with the interest Gary has shown in me for a long time, I thought it was right to repay him.

“Glenavon is a well run club with a lovely ground so it wasn’t a hard decision to make. The camaraderie at Crusaders was fantastic and I’ve been told it’s the same at Glenavon. Gary and Paul Miller have both assured me it’s a very close-knit camp.

“Gary has done a great job and the club have improved on the season before last so hopefully now we can push on again. It’s progress and who knows, now we’ll maybe we even get into the top six and get a good cup run as well.”

Glenavon Lotto numbers this week are: 3, 9, 13, 19.

Seven Match 3 winners. Next week’s Jackpot is worth £3000.