Smith wishes McAlinden well

Larne's Niall McAllister tries to block Patrick Kelly's cross.
Larne's Niall McAllister tries to block Patrick Kelly's cross.

Sammy Smith, who took charge of his last game as Larne’s caretaker boss in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Donegal Celtic, has wished the new manager David McAlinden all the best in his new role.

“I think it’s a very good appointment and I certainly wish Davy the best of luck with the team and I would urge all the players to stay together and give of their best for him,” he told the Times.

Smith’s stint overseeing the Inver Reds ended with a record of two draws and a defeat, with Saturday’s trip to Donegal Celtic yielding a precious point, thanks to a late equaliser.

“I think we deserved the draw even though it only came courtesy of an 89th-minute goal from Ross Black,” said Smith.

“To be honest, we played very poorly in the first half and it was the first time that I have had to raise my voice to the players.

“The goalkeeper, young Dylan McRandal, made two or three great saves. DC were dominant in that first half, but only because we were not at the races.

“We were much better in the second half, even though McRandal made another super save and was probably our Man of the Match. We should have had a penalty when Stuart King beat the offside trap and tried to lob the advancing goalkeeper – who saved the ball with his hands, even though he was four or five yards outside the box!

“The points were still up for grabs with 10 minutes to go, but they scored when we conceded a bad goal. Our boys showed lots of character to fight back and get the equaliser that I thought we were probably well worth.”