Don’t read too much into the right old hammering inflicted upon his Larne team last Saturday by Lisburn Distillery, is the advice of manager Tommy Kincaid.
The Reds boss assures supporters that defeats often happen in pre-season friendly games and it’s far from indicative of what is to come when the competitive action gets under way.
On the face of it, it was pretty embarrassing to suffer a 4-0 bashing at home to a team which just about scrambled its way back into preserving Premier League status.
But, insists Kincaid, it would be wrong to judge his squad on what was seen at Inver Park against The Whites.
“It was disappointing,” he admitted. “In previous games against quality opposition, we had a result that was disappointing but with a performance from which some positives could be taken. But on Saturday the result was poor and the performance was far below what was to be expected.”
“But it should be viewed in the proper perspective. We were a goal down inside two minutes because of what was, quite simply, a complete and utter lack of concentration – and that set the tone for the game.
“But we have to remember what pre-season games are for. I had given some of the boys lots of game-time against Ballymena United and on Saturday I decided to afford other guys the same opportunity.
“They deserved the chance to play against a Premier Division side. I could have thrown guys on for 15 minutes and then let somebody else have 20 minutes. But you need to learn what guys are capable of and you don’t see that against Amateur League opposition.
“Team-wise, the same thing applies. I could have arranged for us to have a schedule of friendly games against low-grade opposition which would allow us the opportunity to string together a series of promising results but pre-season is about finding out things about the players and you learn more against stronger teams.
“And, of course, Niall McAllister would be one of our recognised key players and he was kicking his first ball of the season after coming back from injury, so that has to be taken into account.
“This week we’ll have three more games which will be less taxing,” added Kincaid, who had a look at two lads from the second string in the game against The Whites.
Larne are set to host Rosario today (Saturday, August 4). Before that, the Inver Red & Whites Supporters’ Club AGM will take place at 1pm at Inver Park. All members are requested to attend.