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Rangers remain confident of finals success despite last-round hammering

It’s not the kind of result you want to be on the end of seven days out from semi-finals.

But Macleay Valley Rangers coach Jason Coleman is unperturbed by their 6-1 hammering at the hands of a rampant Southern United on Saturday.

Rangers were severely understrength courtesy of a number of regular first graders either being rested or unavailable.

Troy Ward, Noah Hoskins and Kurt Riordan will all return for their elimination final against Port United this weekend.

And while Coleman isn’t concerned about the five-goal defeat, he said it’s also not something he’ll shout from the rooftops either.

“Not too stressed, mate, not too stressed at all… not that I’m proud of it,” he said.

A number of players were struck down with a virus while others were walking a suspension tightrope which left the coach little option other than to give those players a week off.

“We’ve got bigger fish to fry other than worrying about where we’re going to finish,” he said.

“The football gods have shone upon us a bit and allowed us to keep fourth spot and a home ground (semi) final.”

Other results went their way with Port United only picking up one point from a possible six that saw them sneak into fifth spot.

Coleman said having captain Ward back in his side will make them a far more formidable outfit.

“I think having your captain back is a big boost so we’re very optimistic about what we can achieve,” he said.

Every coach of any team who has qualified for the finals knows the regular season now means very little.

“It’s a whole new ballgame now. We aimed to finish top four position and our aim is to focus on our finals and win it,” Coleman said.

“Everyone else is off suspension worries now thank Christ.”

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