Irish Premiership: Ballymena's Jeffrey named top manager

Ballymena United manager David Jeffrey
David Jeffrey was manager of the month 32 times during his time at Linfield

Ballymena United boss David Jeffrey has been named manager of the month by the Northern Ireland Football Writers for a record 33rd time.

Jeffrey, whose previous awards came during 17 years in charge of Linfield, took over at Ballymena in March 2016.

His side were unbeaten in September and had Irish Premiership wins over Cliftonville, Portadown and Glentoran.

Third-placed United are not in action on Saturday as their match is one of two which have had to be rearranged.

Leaders Crusaders and their nearest rivals Linfield are playing in the Scottish Challenge Cup over the weekend.

With the The postponements featuring the top four in the table Ards, who are fifth, can move back into the top three if they win at home to Coleraine.

Ards will be without midfielder Gareth Tommons who was sent-off for the second time this season during the 3-1 win over Carrick Rangers.

"It is frustrating to be without Gareth, and David McCullough looks like he could be out as well so we are down to the bare bones in the centre of midfield," said Ards manager Niall Currie.

"Davy is a big loss but we will manage it and hopefully there will be a couple of players coming back.

"If you had told me we would be sitting with 16 points at this stage of the season I would have snapped you hand off.

"If we apply ourselves the way we did against Carrick last week, we will give Coleraine a game."

Glentoran, under new manager Gary Haveron, will attempt to halt their slide when they host Ballinamallard United at the Oval.

The Glens were beaten 2-1 by Linfield in Haveron's first match in charge last weekend and have taken just one point from a possible 18.

Cliftonville, reeling from their 4-3 defeat after leading 3-0 against leaders Crusaders, should fancy their chances of seeing off managerless Carrick Rangers who have lost six league games in a row.

Bottom-placed Portadown, who have lost seven of their last eight Premiership matches, are away to Mid-Ulster rivals Dungannon Swifts.

Irish Premiership 8 October (15:00 BST)
CliftonvillevCarrick Rangers
Dungannon SwiftsvPortadown
GlentoranvBallinamallard United
Coverage on Radio Ulster's Sportsound from 14:00 BST

Final Score from Northern Ireland is on BBC2 NI at 17:00 BST on Saturday