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Saturday 8th May v. PSNI (home) - Sadler's Peaky Blinder Irish Cup rd2 - k.o: 3:00pm

PSNI Match Preview

Uploaded Saturday, 10th Apr, 2021 at 16:52

Date: Saturday, 10th April, 2021; Competition: Danske Bank Premiership; Attendance: N/A;
Glenavon [2] [3]
Ballymena United [0] [2]
Venue: Mourneview Park; Kick-Off: 15:00;
Referee: Andrew Davey; Assistant 1: George Argyropoulos; Assistant 2: Andrew Nethery; 4th Official: Mark Dillon;
[1-0] SINGLETON, James (34 mins), [2-0] FITZPATRICK, Matthew (39 mins), [2-1] ADDIS, Jonathan (58 mins), [2-2] HYLAND, Craig (og 65 mins), [3-2] PURKIS, Daniel (pen 77 mins)

BALLYMENA United's top six hopes were dealt a considerable blow with a 3-2 defeat at Glenavon in an eventful game on Saturday afternoon.
United made one change from the side that came back from two goals down to draw with Glentoran in midweek, and it was injury enforced again as Tony Kane made way for Sean Graham.
Before kick-off at Mourneview Park a minute's silence was held to mark the passing yesterday of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
Glenavon started the better in Mid Ulster with the majority of the play in the Ballymena half, but they failed to really threaten a confident and assured looking Dylan Graham. The 'keeper dealt with a number of crosses and when James Singleton did get a header on target from a corner, it was well held by Graham. Ballymena hadn't register any chances in the opening twenty minutes but almost capitalised on a mix up at the back between Sean Ward and Glenavon 'keeper Craig Hyland. It ended with Ben Wylie charging down Hyland's attempted clearance, but as Wylie tried to reach the ball and tap home into an empty net, he lost his balance and the ball trundled out for a goal kick.
That Glenavon scare was quickly matched at the other end as Ballymena looked to be in trouble when Daniel Purkis played a great through ball for Peter Campbell, but as he honed in on goal he ballooned his effort over.
The game was finally starting to open up around the half hour mark, but it was still the hosts doing most of the running, and the Sky Blues had their defence and 'keeper to thank for keeping the score level. At close range Campbell was denied twice in a matter of seconds first by the body of Jim Ervin and then by Ross Redman. The second block fell to Greg Moorhouse, but his effort was wonderfully saved by Graham to tip it round for a corner. That corner was met by Colin Coates, though he could only head over, but three minutes later another corner brought the game's opener for Glenavon. Glenavon were making a point of putting corner's on top of the United 'keeper and this time Aaron Harmon's ball in was met on the line by Singleton who headed home.
Five minutes later it was 2-0 and again United were undone from a corner. This time it came in from the opposite side and the ball was knocked down goalwards by Moorhouse, with Matthew Fitzpatrick seeming to claim the final touch as it crossed the line.
On the stroke of half-time yet another corner caused United problems. Campbell's header came crashing off the crossbar, with Purkis' follow up headed off the line by Ryan Waide, as Glenavon took a thoroughly deserved lead into the break against a Ballymena team who hadn't registered a first half shot.
The second half started as slowly as the first, with the ball barely entering either box in the opening ten minutes, but as Ballymena finally came to life as the snow began to fall, they produced their second comeback in five days from 2-0 down. On fifty-eight minutes, with Ballymena's first half decent look, they halved the deficit. It was the third goal of the game to come from a corner, as this time Redman's cross was nodded home by Jonny Addis.
Playing with a confidence not seen at all in the first half, Ballymena had a strong penalty appeal waved away when Waide went down when tackled by Singleton, but a minute later Ballymena levelled in bizarre circumstances. A free kick floated into the box via Redman looked to be easy pickings for Hyland, but somehow the goalkeeper managed to punch the ball behind himself and into the empty goal.
There was a much more end to end nature to the game in general by now, and The Lurgan Blues could've went back in front when Moorhouse had a free header but could only loop it over the bar. On seventy-seven minutes Glenavon were presented the perfect chance to regain the lead as Ballymena's hard work was undone by a penalty. Substitute Ryan Harpur was late on Campbell in the box, and from the spot Purkis dispatched the ball into the bottom corner past Graham to make it 3-2.
It took until added time for Ballymena to give Glenavon a moment of panic. Again a cross was spilled by Hyland, but after a scramble the goalkeeper was able to gather the ball on the ground. With the last chance from a long throw in Shay McCartan could only loop a difficult header over, and after a penalty, an own goal, a comeback and five goals, United came out on the wrong end of the result to dent the Sky Blues' top six hopes.
Ballymena United are on the road again next Saturday afternoon when they head to Belfast to take on champions and league leaders Linfield, kicking off at 5:30pm.
Match Report by Phillip McPeake
Ballymena United Team:
Dylan Graham, Ross Redman, Jonathan Addis, Paul McElroy, Seamus McCartan, Ryan Waide ( Owen McKeown 82), Trai Hume, Jim Ervin, Joshua Kelly, Sean Graham ( 62 Kenneth Kane 82), Ben Wylie ( Ryan Harpur 63).

Subs not used: James Knowles, Spencer Beattie, Tom Mathieson, Craig Farquhar.