Jeffrey: Summer signings will push Sky Blues forward

Ballymena boss David Jeffrey
Ballymena boss David Jeffrey

Ballymena United manager David Jeffrey believes his summer signings will push the Sky Blues forward in the coming months.

Jeffrey’s men face Crusaders in the opening game of their league campaign at the Showgrounds on Friday night and Conor Brennan, Andrew Burns, Emmet Friars, Michael gault, Stephen McAlorum and Stephen McCullough have all joined the United squad.

And the boss believes his new recruits will prove their worth.

“We wanted to sign good people, because you are only as good as the people you surround yourself with.

“They are also good players and you can see this year we have been able to sign established players who have a pedigree and they understand what winning is all about.

“And hopefully that will filter to the rest of the squad.”

And Jeffrey says the Sky Blues will look to try and move on from last season’s fourth place finish in the league and the manager and his assistant Bryan McLoughlin have left the players in no doubt what is expected this season.

“We are not going to say we are doing this and that but the players know the expectations of Bryan and myself. Those are very clear,” he said. “We simple say to them ‘ ‘if we win games, we win trophies and if we win trophies they get new contracts’.

“The turnover we have had since we got here has been huge but we wanted to get people in who were better and hungrier and that process will continue.

“The players will know from the start what we want from them and we want them to be the best they can be.”

And the former Linfield manager knows this will be a huge season for the Showgrounds outfit and that they will want to build on the success they had last season.

“We have a great bunch of boys here, and the culture of the club is good and we have a rapport with the fans,” he said. “There are so many positives that are there but the underlining thing is about success on the pitch and the players delivering that success.

“And if you deliver that on the pitch consistently you will stay in the team.”

And new signing McAlorum is looking forward to getting started with his new club.

“It was the right time to move, to be honest,” he said. “There were just a few things going on the background at Glentoran that didn’t sit well with me.

“They offered me a new contract and they knew I wasn’t going to accept it. The team is very, very fit.

“We’ve been in pre-season since June 11/12 and you can see the difference already. We’re training four times a week.”