Too early to talk promotion says captain

TIR Na Nog captain Paul Carville says it is far to early to talk about promotion.

The former county player, who watched his side demolish Clann Eireann in last Friday’s league encounter, is stressing that the Ballyoran men who are undefeated this season have a long way to go before there is any talk of moving to the top flight.

Paul said, “There is a long way to go before we can even think about promotion. We have won all our games to date but we could still be relegated with the points we have on the board.”

Last season the Portadown side, by their own admission, under performed but they look re-born under their new management team of Ronan McWilliams, Danny Turley and Pearse Ogs man Paddy Toner.

Paul Carville, who had to sit out last weekends game through injury, could be out for a number of weeks but the players who lined out for the Ogs last week played an exciting style which is the most impressive seen by the Mail reporter this season.

“The management team have us playing with a bit of intensity,” added Carville. “All the lads are working hard in training and it is beginning to show on the pitch. We won’t be taking anything for granted though,” said the Portadown man.

The Ogs played a big section of last Friday nights game with an extra man, Clann Eireann’s player manager Mark Beattie was sent off at a time when his side were just two points behind and with the Clann’s tiring Tir Na Nog cruised to a 1-14 to 0-05 win. The Portadown men have a good balance of youth and experience in their side and Paul Grimley’s relaxing of the policy governing the availability of county players has certainly helped their cause. Brian Mallon played a major role in the win. The peerless Barry McDonald was outstanding at centre half back, David Turley is adding experience to their attack and young Shay Skelton looks a good prospect. On Friday night Clann Eireann battled bravely to the end against a very confidant Tir Na Nog side, John McLaughlin had a good second half and Barry Seeley’s return will be a boost for the Lurgan Club.

According to Tir Na Nog captain Carville a lot of tough games lie ahead. “We need to keep picking up points, there are a lot of tough games still to be played in the weeks and months ahead. “It’s all about getting used to winning and we will see where it takes us.”