FOOTBALL: 'Stute manager hard at work
Newly installed Institute manager Paddy McLaughlin is working hard re-signing most of the 2016/17 squad, which narrowly missed out on promotion.
McLaughlin confirmed that Marty Gallagher, Ryan Morrow, Dean Curry, Mark Scoltock, Darryl McDermott, Aaron Harkin, Niall Grace, Gareth Brown and Stephen Curry to name but a few have all re-signed for the club.
However attacking duo Michael McCrudden and Jamie McIntyre are both still undecided, as is midfielder Raymond Foy.
Winger McIntyre believed to be mulling over a possible move to Danske Bank Premiership side Ballinamallard.
“The squad at the minute is looking very similar to last season,” he admitted.
“I have given everybody the opportunity to comeback and give it another go. I think everybody deserves another crack, because they have worked their socks off and have come within minutes from promotion over the last two seasons, so I think we aren’t a million miles away from being a Premiership side.
“I still have a few other players to try and tie up which will hopefuilly be sorted one way or the other sooner rather than later.
“Every season, every team wants new faces to come in, just to freshen the place up and give everybody a lift and I think now with most of the squad staying on, a few new faces will give us a lift and kick up the backside to kick on for next season.”
Pre-season gets underway at the start of season and McLaughlin has already lined up a few friendlies against Derry City, Cliftonville and Dungannon Swifts.
“The boys are doing their off season programme at the minute before doing their fitness testing and body fat testing later this month before pre-season actually starts on Monday July 3,” he said.
“The days of not doing a thing for six weeks and then just landing in and running around the pitch are long gone.
“We are working hard on our schedule and we are playing Clifonville at home July 22nd and then Dungannon away on Saturday August 5th.
“Kenny Shiels had told me that he will send over a strong squad to face us, but with Derry City playing in Europe, we just have to organise a date.
“We will also be playing a few junior teams, so we have a good mixture of friendlies coming up for the boys to get ready for the new season.”