‘Never say never’ to more new players

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Larne manager Davy McAlinden hasn’t ruled out the possibility of bringing more new faces to Inver Park as the countdown to the 2014-15 campaign begins.

Speaking after the Inver Reds returned to pre-season training on Saturday, McAlinden told the Times: “As far as signing any more players is concerned, managers will all tell you the same thing and that is we never say never, because you don’t know what is coming down the track.

“We have six pre-season friendlies arranged and the good news for the Larne supporters is that all of them will be played at Inver Park, beginning on July 15 with a game against Newington.”

The pre-season programme also includes Albert Foundry (July 19), Queen’s University (July 22), Cliftonville (July 26), Larne Tech (July 29), Dunmurry Rec (August 2).

The Larne players, including a string of new faces, will no doubt be hard at work between now and the big kick-off, but McAlinden says they will be eased into their fitness programme.

“We started on Saturday and everybody seemed pretty pleased with what we got up to. There is a lot of hard work to come down the line but we didn’t ask them to bust their guts at this early stage,” he explained.

“For the first few weeks, we will be training on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays but from the middle of July it will then become training on Mondays, games on Tuesdays, training on Thursdays and games on Saturdays.

“But it will be a case of easing them into the whole thing. We need to get fitness levels up but, where possible, we will try to incorporate ball work into that because, after all, that is what it is all about.”

Meanwhile, McAlinden has confirmed that Niall McAllister has left the club due to work commitments.