As our 2019/20 club profile series begins to consider last season’s top 6, we turn our attention to Coleraine. After a disappointing season for the club, former manager Oran Kearney makes his return following a spell in Scotland.
|Cliftonville||Saturday August 10th||Home|
|Glenavon||Tuesday August 13th||Home|
|Linfield||Saturday August 17th||Away|
|Institute||Saturday August 24th||Home|
|Glenavon||Friday August 30th||Away|
|Dungannon Swifts||Saturday September 7th||Home|
While a period of adjustment was always likely following the departure of Oran Kearney, 1 win in 10 games for new boss Rodney McAree was a reality check for Coleraine. Mixed results continued throughout the campaign. A single victory after the split is a marker of Coleraine’s position amongst the top six since the departure of boss Kearney and star player Brad Lyons. The return of the former following a spell as St Johnston manager may present a rejuvenated outfit on the North Coast in the coming season.
Coleraine’s biggest acquisition has been the return of manager Oran Kearney. The club is still to announce any new members of the playing staff while Dylan Davidson and Dylan King have left the Showgrounds for Glentoran and Glenavon respectively. The transfer saga surrounding Jamie McGonigle and Crusaders looks set to continue, with Coleraine looking to secure the signing of Phillip Lowry in return for the out-going striker plus a cash fee. A large-scale reconstruction of the club appears unlikely in time for the new season.
Having managed Coleraine from 2011 to 2018, the return of manager Oran Kearney is a promising development for Coleraine. A second-place finish (with a single defeat) and an Irish Cup success in Kearney’s final year in charge has raised expectation amongst Coleraine support. This was standard was achieved however following a long period of development overseen by Kearney in his original stint as manager. In the season since the manager’s departure the club has regressed dramatically. After an underwhelming tenure in Scotland, Kearney will be eager to prove his credentials and stabilise Coleraine once again.
Coleraine have a long period of reconstruction ahead of them. Oran Kearney will be searching for the defensive rigidity enjoyed by Coleraine throughout his previous reign, while the Jamie McGonigal transfer saga requires resolution. With the club’s ahead of Coleraine having strengthened in their own right, progress up the league will be hard-fought. While Kearney will undoubtedly strengthen his side, progress into the top three will be unlikely this time around for the Bannsiders.
Coleraine are a 16/1 shot to upset the odds and lift the Gibson Cup in Kearney’s first season back at the club. If you think Coleraine can hold on to McGonigle and get the front-man scoring again this season he’s 14/1 to be top goalscorer. All prices are available in store or via our dial-a-bet service.
Check out all of our Irish League odds here, and join us again tomorrow for the next in our club profile series: Cliftonville. Catch-up with our previous club profiles here: Warrenpoint Town, Institute, Carrick Rangers, Dungannon Swifts, Glenavon, Glentoran.