Gers set for ‘Big Two’ double-header

Carrick's Mark Surgenor gets to grips with Dungannon's Cormac Burke. Photo: Press Eye INLT 33-920-CON
Carrick's Mark Surgenor gets to grips with Dungannon's Cormac Burke. Photo: Press Eye INLT 33-920-CON

They got the job done at Dungannon Swifts on the opening day and now Gary Haveron’s Carrick are readying themselves for two titanic tests against Linfield and Glentoran at Taylor’s Avenue.

The Gers got off to a flyer when ruthless Portuguese frontman Miguel Chines - the club’s top scorer last term - picked up where he left off with a double to secure a 2-1 win at Stangmore Park on Saturday.

Carrick striker Miguel Chines. INLT 33-901-CON

Carrick striker Miguel Chines. INLT 33-901-CON

With Warren Feeney’s Blues in town tonight (Wednesday, 7:45 pm), the three points gained against the Swifts takes a bit of the pressure off. But Linfield made short work of Ballymena United when they coasted to a 4-0 win at Windsor and Carrick will have to be at their very best to take anything from the match.

When the Linfield game is done and dusted, the Amber Army have another tasty home fixture to get their teeth into in the form of Eddie Patterson’s Glentoran.

Yes, it’s early days, but these are exciting times at Carrick and striker Chines says everyone in the camp was delighted to get a win under their belts at the weekend.

“It was the perfect start. We all wanted to get off to a good start,” he said. “Three points was a must and it gave us an idea of hard this season will definitely be.”

Reluctant to major on his vital role in Saturday’s victory, the veteran attacker instead chose to praise the team’s display.

“I would have taken three points with anybody scoring the goals. I really just wanted to get the win.

“But, yeah, on a personal note, I was happy enough to score a couple of goals. It was all down to the hard work of the boys. I was just the guy who ended up putting the ball in the back of the net. It’s all down to my team-mates, to be honest.”

Chines began his Irish League career with Linfield, bursting on to the scene under David Jeffrey in 2002. Thirteen years on, he’s looking forward to testing himself against his old club.

“It won’t get much bigger than this when it comes to playing Linfield - whether it’s home or away.

“In this case, it’s Carrick back in the Premiership and it’s our first home match against Linfield. Does it get any bigger? I really don’t think so.

“This is a match that all of the boys are excited about and looking forward to. I don’t look at it as Linfield being one of my former clubs, I just see it as being a very, very big challenge and I can’t wait until we go again.”