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Larne Match Preview
Uploaded Monday, 12th Mar, 2018 at 13:02

BALLYMENA United host Bluefin Sport Championship side Larne in the quarter-final of the Tennent's Irish Cup on Tuesday evening.
United played Larne at Inver Park in a pre-season friendly before the 2016/17 season got underway, drawing 1-1 with Johnny McMurray opening the scoring with a 6th minute penalty and Larne's James McCabe levelling with 6 minutes left.

The last competitive game between the sides was a Toals Co Antrim Shield semi-final in December 2015 at Inver Park, the game ending 1-1 at 90 minutes after a last minute equaliser from Willie Faulkner taking it to extra-time. Darren Henderson scored early in the first period of extra-time to give United the lead but a goal from Conall McGrandles 6 minutes later resulted in a nervy end before David Cushley grabbed the winner at the start of the second extra period.

The Braidmen went on to lift the trophy a few weeks later with a 3-2 win over Linfield, goals coming from Paddy McNally, David Cushley and Eoin Kane.
Latest results v Larne:
Larne 1-1 Ballymena United, Inver Park, 16th July 2016. (Pre-Season Friendly)
Larne 1-1 (2-3 aet) Ballymena United, Inver Park, 1st December 2015. (Toals Co Antrim Shield semi-final)
Larne 4-3 Ballymena United, Inver Park, 1st August 2015. (Pre-Season Friendly)
Since the start of the year, Larne have remained unbeaten with several big wins under their belt. In the league they beat Knockbreda 8-0, Limavady United 2-1 and Lurgan Celtic, all at home, and drew 1-1 at home to Harland & Wolff Welders and PSNI, along with a single 2-2 draw at Portadown. They currently sit top of Section B in the Bluefin Sport Championship, 9 points clear of 8th placed PSNI.

They've reached the quarter-final stage of this years Tennent's Irish Cup with a 3-0 win at home to Dergview in the 5th round, and a resounding 6-1 win over Dundela at home in the 6th round.
Ballymena United:
The start to 2018 was a windy affair for United as their first game, away to Cliftonville, was abandoned at half-time due to high winds. In the league the Braidmen beat Carrick Rangers 3-0 at the Showgrounds and Dungannon Swifts 3-2 at Stangmore Park, and drew 2-2 with Linfield at the Showgrounds, losing 1-0 away to Ards twice, 3-1 to Crusaders at Seaview and, on Saturday afternoon 2-0 at home to Coleraine. United currently sit 7th in the Danske Bank Premiership, 6 points behind Glentoran with 2 games in hand and 5 points ahead of Ards with 2 games in hand. The Sky Blues have lost both the Toals Co Antrim Shield and BetMcLean League Cup finals since the turn of the year, to Crusaders and Dungannon Swifts, so have a lot to prove in the coming weeks.

The journey to the quarter-finals of the Tennent's Irish Cup has seen United ease past Moyola Park with a 4-0 win at the Showgrounds, goals coming from Kyle Owens, Matthew Shevlin (2) and Tony Kane. The 6th round threw up another home tie, this time against Ballinamallard United, and it took a 4-3 win on penalties to set up this game against Larne.
Supporters Information:
For entrance/exit arrangements please read this article.
Match Officials:
Referee: Andrew Davey. Assistant 1: Stephen Donaldson. Assistant 2: Ken Ross. 4th Official: Steven Gregg.
Match Information:
Season Tickets, Junior Sky Blues Membership & Youth Academy Passes are invalid for this game.

Admission is payable at the gate.

Kick off is 7:45pm.

Should the scores be level after 90 minutes, 2 x 15 minute periods of extra time will be played. If the scores are still level after the end of the extra time, the tie shall be decided by a penalty shoot-out.
Larne will be bringing a convoy of supporters buses to the game on Tuesday evening and, not without reason, are hopeful of getting a result. Ballymena United will be looking to get back on form after the weekends defeat, so it's shaping up to be a great game. Make your way to the Showgrounds and be loud and proud in support of YOUR team - Come On Sky Blues!
Match Preview by Paul Irwin