INSTITUTE boss, Paul Kee is expecting a positive response from his players in tomorrow’s Intermediate Cup clash with Harland & Wolf Welders at the Riverside Stadium following what he described as an ‘unacceptable’ exit from the Irish Cup last weekend. (Kick-off 3 p.m.)
The Drumahoe men suffered a shock 0-2 home defeat to Amateur League outfit, Kilmore Rec last Saturday, missing out on a high profile quarter-final against Premier League table toppers, Cliftonville.
That loss ended an eight game unbeaten run in all competitions for Institute and Kee is determined his side return to winning ways and progress in their last remaining cup competition.
“We lost a big Irish Cup tie last week,” said the ‘Stute boss. “The Irish Cup is a major competition and the performance against Kilmore was unacceptable.
“I’m taking the responsibility for that because I put the 11 out onto the pitch, but I’m expecting a big response from the players this week.
“The Welders are going to be the same as Kilmore in terms of intensity and we are going to have to match that.
“Having said all that the Welders game is going to be totally different because there was a lot of emotion, hype and build-up to the Kilmore game and because of that I think the Welders game will look after itself.
“It will be interesting to see how the players react to last Saturday’s defeat. Everything is always fine when you are winning, so it’s going to be interesting to see what the players are all about after a defeat.”
With a place in the sixth round of the Intermediate Cup at stake Kee understands his side can’t afford to be complacent, despite easily accounting for the East Belfast men in the league campaign back in November where they won 2-0.
“If we aren’t competitive, if we don’t get around the play and if we are complacent then we are going to end up with egg on our face.
“I’m hoping the big disappointment of losing to Kilmore in the Irish Cup will ensure the players will bounce back.”
The Drumahoe side are without defensive trio Graham Crown, Graeme Taylor and John Curran, however Sean Roddy and Dean Jarvis are expected to make a return.
“I’m hoping both Sean and Dean are back, because obviously Crowner is now away to Switzerland and both Curran and Taylor are suspended so that’s three defenders out,” he concluded.