Hill wants maximum points from next two matches

Comrades boss, Eddie Hill.
Comrades boss, Eddie Hill.

BALLYCLARE Comrades face two league fixtures in the space of four days and manager Eddie Hill is demanding a full haul of Championship 2 points.

The Reds are away to Moyola Park on Saturday, before entertaining PSNI on Tuesday evening.

“In the past we have been guilty of dropping points to so-called lesser teams, but having significantly strengthened the squad during the January transfer widow, I trust that we have addressed our Achilles heel,” Hill said.

“Moyola is a potential banana-skin encounter. Although they have never been serious promotion challengers, they have beaten us twice at Dixon Park in the past two seasons and cannot be taken lightly.

“On Tuesday evening PSNI come to Dixon Park on the back of a win against second placed Armagh City, so they will be seeking another scalp.

“However, following Saturday’s excellent display against Portstewart, I am confident that we can clear these hurdles.”

Hill said he was pleased with how his new signings performed in Saturday’s 2-0 win over Portstewart.

“They all fitted in well with Chris Shimmon turning in a Man of the Match display. He linked up impressively with skipper Ricky Higgins, but in the later stages I experimented by dropping Ricky to midfield with another recruit, Mark Wilkinson, making his debut up top.

“That meant that we had two six footers in attack, and this combination could put defences under a lot of pressure.

“With Johnny McClurg unavailable, and Simon McGowan suspended, Andy Simms came straight in to centre-midfield after moving back from Larne, and he too had a successful debut.

“Chris Getty (signed from Ballymoney United) also impressed at the back. He and Andrew Doyle complemented each other perfectly at the heart of the defence, and Chris was particularly strong in the air.

“Importantly, we bossed the engine room where Simms, Gerard McAlea, Agnew and Adam Gray had the edge on their opposite numbers, and our keeper Paddy Flood had only one save of note to make in the entire match.

“Their goalkeeper was much busier, but was glad to see two shots hit the woodwork, and we could easily have won by five or six.

“Overall, our experimental new-look side did the business, and with a strong squad I will be able to try out new formations in the weeks ahead, depending upon how results go.

“Knockbreda continue to lead from the front. We have already beaten them as well as other main title contenders Lurgan Celtic, while second-placed Armagh City have been dropping points lately, so a healthy return from our five match February programme would put us firmly back in promotion mode.

“I was especially pleased with our performance after being idle for three weeks, so here’s hoping that we continue our climb up the table,” he added.