After a two year break from the club, former assistant manager Brian Khan has re-joined the coaching staff at Ballinamallard as they look for a solution to their poor start to the season. 
Khan spent seven years as Whitey Anderson’s right hand man, and current manager Gavin Dykes has now invited him back into the dressing room to assist him and current assistant manager Andy Crawford.
Brian admitted the offer had come as a surprise, but he was delighted to accept. 
“I wasn’t expecting it at all,” he said. 
“I went down to a couple of Ballinamallard games at the start of the season, and then out of the blue I got a phone call from Gavin. I wasn’t expecting it but my own plan was maybe to get back into football at Ballinamallard, maybe with a bit of youth team coaching, but Gavin asked me to come on board and help out. 
“I went down and spoke to him and had a look at the training, and decided I was happy to get on board. I just felt the time was right for me to get back into football in some capacity and this was the ideal opportunity for me.”
Brian was a huge part of Ballinamallard’s rise through the ranks to the Premier League, having served as assistant manager from 2008 until 2015. 
“I thoroughly enjoyed my time but it was seven years and it got very intense, especially when we got into the Premier League,” he said. 
“I just felt after seven years maybe it was time for me to take a break, and maybe the boys in the changing room needed to hear a different voice and something different in training. I just thought I had gone a bit stale and had lost my enthusiasm so I thought it was the right time to step back. I spoke to Whitey and decided to take a total break from football.”
There has been a lot of changes at the club in Brian’s absence, but despite the league position he has been impressed with what he has seen so far at training. 
“One thing that took me by surprise in a nice way was the enthusiasm of the lads,” he said. 
“You wouldn’t think they are a team at the bottom of the league when you see their enthusiasm and their energy. They are a really good bunch of lads to work with. The enthusiasm is there and they are all up for the battle.”
Brian believes that experience could be the key to dragging themselves out of trouble.
 “I’m very optimistic that we will turn the corner. In training the morale is really high and we have brought that onto the pitch a bit on Saturdays since I have been there, but it’s when we hit difficult spells we need a bit of leadership to drive us on. We need a bit more steel and leadership on the pitch, especially in difficult periods in games. We have been punished for mistakes and we haven’t had much luck, but we will now have to make our own luck and dig in. 
“When the going gets tough sometimes we go into our shell and we drop very deep defensively and we invite pressure, but the talent is there. I’m hopeful we will turn this around.”
And he reckons some of the returning playing personnel could prove vital in their revival. 
“If we can get players like McKenna back in that will help,” he said.
 “James is a couple of weeks away and young Niall Owens is doing light jogging so he is not far away. Stuart Hutchinson is doing 60 minutes on the pitch at full tilt so he is almost there and his partnership with Richard Clarke in the centre of midfield could be very good, and if we can get young Curran higher up the pitch then we will score goals. 
“I know a few of the lads missed pre-season as well so we are trying to build in a bit of fitness work at this stage. 
“That isn’t ideal but some boys are lacking a bit on fitness and we are trying to get them back up to speed. 
“I just think a couple of good results starting with Warrenpoint on Friday could lead to a wee run and really boost us up the table,” he commented.