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Gray: Reward is in the works

Barry Gray says the lesson Cliftonville need to learn from last night’s defeat to Coleraine is that they must work harder for Danske Bank Premiership points.

The Reds delivered a flat performance that only produced any degree of rhythm when the hosts were already two goals to the good – a situation with which the Manager was less than satisfied.

“It wasn’t acceptable and it will never be acceptable,” he explains.

“The players need to learn that very quickly – that wasn’t my team on show. That’s nothing that we’ve worked on in my time so far at Cliftonville and it’s nothing that I’ll accept. Being a good player and not working means nothing.”

The Reds boss expects a reaction when he takes his team to face Ballinamallard United at the weekend but insists that, rather than constantly responding to disappointment, he wants to see his players strive to eradicate those setbacks in the first place.

“I’ve no doubt we will go out on Saturday and pick ourselves up and dust ourselves off but these players need to learn that that’s not good enough for me,” he adds.

“It never will be good enough for me and they need to show more on a consistent basis. If it is a problem with the team – whether it be shape, formation or selection – I’ll take that. I’ll take full responsibility but I won’t take responsibility for the performance levels.

“We don’t lose in the manner and performance in which we lost at Coleraine.”