Ferguson demands improvement from Sky Blues in cup quarter-final

Glenn Ferguson insists Ballymena United’s Irish Cup dream will come to a crashing halt this weekend if they don’t improve on last weekend’s performance.

Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson. Picture: Press Eye.

The Sky Blues beat Warrenpoint 3-2 to keep alive their hopes of a top six finish in the Danske Bank Premiership - but Ferguson says they will need to perform much better in Saturday’s Irish Cup quarter-final tie at home to Dungannon Swifts (3pm).

“The second half performance wasn’t good enough - if we play like that this week, we’ll be out of the cup.

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“That’s the bottom line and the players know that and we know we will have to prepare thoroughly during the week if we’re to get any joy out of this game.

“In my opinion, Dungannon are a better side than Warrenpoint - they have better players and more matchwinners, I believe.

“It will be a tough game because if they go out of the cup it will be the end of their season.

“I keep saying, the longer you stay in the cup, the longer your season stays alive - we have the cup and trying to reach the top six as well.”

Gary Thompson remains sidelined as he completes a two-match ban while Mark Surgenor is also suspended after accumulating five bookings.

But Ferguson confirmed that veteran defender Davy Munster could return to the panel after being left out against Warrenpoint for tactical reasons.

“We play Davy against teams with big, strong centre forwards - there’s no point playing him against two centre forwards who are 5’6” and lightning quick like Warrenpoint have and Davy knows that.

“Who’s to say he won’t be back against Dungannon to mark Gary Liggett?” added Ferguson.

* Paramount Supporters’ Club holds its monthly table quiz this Friday evening, February 28 in the Bowling Club (8.30pm).