Ferguson slams ‘shocking’ defending in Ballinamallard defeat

Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson holds his head in his hands during Saturday's 4-2 defeat at Ballinamallard. Picture: Press Eye.
Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson holds his head in his hands during Saturday's 4-2 defeat at Ballinamallard. Picture: Press Eye.

Glenn Ferguson launched another scathing attack on his Ballymena United side’s defensive frailties in Saturday’s 4-2 defeat at Ballinamallard.

The Sky Blues’ patched-up rearguard was given a torrid time as the Mallards won for the first time in the league since October.

“I’m embarrassed by the performance and I’m embarrassed even more so by the defending,” fumed Ferguson

“The quality of our defending was absolutely shocking.

“I know people will say that we had three of our normal back four suspended but when boys are given a chance, they need to be ready.

“I know we had to reshuffle but that is no excuse - it was just poor, rank lack of concentration and defensive mistakes and it was hard to watch at times.

“I had a right go at the players at half-time and told them we needed to come out at the start of the second half, start high up the pitch and get into the game and we did that, but then the goals we conceded were criminal.

“We played like a bunch of schoolboys who had never played together - that’s how bad it was.

“The second was a bit fortuitous, a free kick that took a deflection and wrong-footed Alan but if you don’t buy a ticket, you don’t win the lottery.

“I told the boys before the game to go out, start brightly and try to get the first shot on target and dictate the tempo of the game.

“Alvin Rouse didn’t have a save to make - I could have done nets for Ballinamallard in the first half and that’s no joke. He didn’t have save to make or a cross to collect.

“If players think because they have won a cup final they have arrived, they’re in for a wake-up call.

“If I need to ship out some of the players, or just not pick them if they are going to play as badly as that - it will have to be done.

“I have no issues about doing that because I’m not going to let that happen again.

“The only player to come out with any credit at all was Stephen McBride. He defended well, went and joined in the attack and was decent on the ball and put the ball in the right areas.

“The rest of them need to go and have a look at themselves - and that’s the harsh reality.

“You can’t come to places like Ballinamallard, which is a difficult place to come, score two goals and get nothing out of the game,” added Ferguson.