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Oran Kearney hoping to have a full squad available soon

Oran Kearney is hoping there is some light at the end of the tunnel after a mini injury crisis at Coleraine.

The Bannsiders’ squad has been threadbare to say the least in recent weeks.

Kearney admitted after last week’s defeat at Larne his hand was forced in terms of formation and selection.

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But with four league games to go before the crucial European play-offs the Coleraine boss is hoping to have everyone fit and raring to go again.

Coleraine boss Oran Kearney

“We’ve probably had a season so far where injuries and suspensions haven’t been a big issue,” Kearney said ahead of today’s game against Crusaders.

“But since the Cup final it just feels like we’ve been patched up for a few weeks.

“There’s an air of frustration with that as we were forced to play the formation we did at Larne because of the senior players we had fit.

“We only had three recognised defenders so we had to go that way.

“People like Josh have to pull us out of a hole and play in a number of different roles because we are short on bodies.

“The big worry is we can’t just roll players out for a play-off in a month’s time.

“It was important to get Matthew Shevlin game time against Larne as that was the first he’s played since the final.

“Conor McKendry and Jamie Glackin hopefully aren’t far away from a return either.

“But they will need at least two or three games to get up to speed.

“The good thing is the quality of opposition you’re going to be playing against.

“You couldn’t pick better opposition, it’s like five pre-season games with the big one at the end.

“We don’t want to reach the play-off and then try and roll players out who haven’t played for weeks.

“There’s also a three-game week coming up soon when all of a sudden you have three games wiped out.

“There’s a lot of work to be done to make sure we can get minutes into players over the next week.

“We’ve a lot in the legs, we’ve a lot of work in this year and I still feel that on our day that if we can field what we want to field, we’re a match for anybody in this league.”