'Only best will do against Crues' - Swifts boss McAree

Crusaders beat Dungannon 4-0 in the league on 21 November
Gavin Whyte scored two when Crusaders beat Dungannon 4-0 in the league on 21 November

Dungannon boss Rodney McAree says they must produce a top-drawer performance to have any chance of beating Crusaders in Tuesday's NI League Cup semi-final.

The Crues, who lifted the County Antrim Shield last week, are top of the Irish Premiership and unbeaten in 23 matches.

"Crusaders are a free-scoring side who play on the front foot and ask you a lot of questions," said McAree.

"We are going to have to be at our very best if we are going to get something out of it."

Crusaders last won the League Cup in 2012 and were beaten finalists in the next two seasons.

They won 4-0 away to the Swifts in the league in November but manager Stephen Baxter is not expecting such an easy time in the semi-final.

"For me, Dungannon are a class outfit and I think they should be riding higher in the league table because they have really good players," he said.

"On their home patch, they will come into the game with some confidence.

"The League Cup is a big competition and we will be really up for it because we want to get to the final."

Ballymena United will be at home to Cliftonville in the other semi-final on Tuesday, 6 February.

Linfield's Mark Haughey was dismissed during the Premiership match at Ballymena
Linfield's Mark Haughey was dismissed during the Premiership match at Ballymena

Meanwhile, in the Irish Premiership, Coleraine have the chance to regain top spot when they host Linfield in a rearranged fixture.

Fifth-placed Linfield, who lost three league matches on their way to winning the title last season, have suffered eight defeats this term and are 20 points behind leaders Crusaders.

The Blues are without defender Mark Haughey following his red card in Saturday's 2-2 draw away to Ballymena United, while Coleraine's Brad Lyons and Stephen Dooley are injury doubts after picking up knocks in their weekend win at Glentoran.

Coleraine's only defeat in the league this season was at the hands of Linfield, losing 2-1 at Windsor Park on 18 November.

Bet McLean League Cup semi-final (19:45 GMT)
Dungannon SwiftsvCrusaders
Danske Bank Irish Premiership (19:45 GMT)
ColerainevLinfield