It was scoreless at the Bet McLean Oval in tonight's rearranged Danske Bank Premiership game. With Marcus Kane serving a one game suspension, James Singleton started in the left back slot with Aidan Wilson donning the captain's armband. Jay Donnelly returned after missing the Cliftonville game on Saturday but Rory Donnelly sat this one out due to an injury sustained in the Solitude fixture. Hrvoje Plum was also in the starting line up with Shay McCartan dropping to the bench.
Glentoran should have been in front as early as the 5th minute. Jay Donnelly collected the ball on the right and fired a great cross into the penalty area. Terry Devlin met it but his header from close range was somehow kept out bu Rory Brown in the Glenavon goal. On the quarter hour mark another cross from the right, this time delivered by Rhys Marshall again found Terry Devlin in the area but again the visiting keeper kept him out. The resulting corner was played short to Niall McGinn by Conor McMenamin and his cross almost resulted in a goal; Hrvoje Plum's overhead kick going just wide of the post.
Rhys Marshall then linked up with Nial McGinn but the Northern Ireland international's shot was straight at Rory Brown. It was to be McGinn's last action as he picked up what seemed to be a calf injury and was replaced by Junior on 21 minutes. Junior's first contribution was a delightful flick which found Conor McMenamin. His low driven cross across the 6-yard line failed to find a Glentoran forward though. On 37 minutes a foul on Bobby Burns by Jordan Stewart gave Hrvoje Plum the chance to play a free kick into the danger area but the ball was headed behind for a corner. A couple of minutes later Burns collected the ball from McMenamin before clipping in forward for Terry Devlin but his volley flew well over. In first half stoppage time there was a half chance for Matthew Snoddy but he failed to trouble Aaron McCarey.
Halftime: Glentoran 0-0 Glenavon
Early in the second half a poor foul on Bobby Burns resulted in a yellow card for former Glentoran defender, Calum Birney. Hrvoje Plum took the set piece but his 30-yard effort deflected off the wall and wide for a corner. On 53 minutes Junior was pulled down around 25 yards out when clear through on goal but there was only a yellow card for the defender. There were chances at either end just before the hour mark. Fitzpatrick fired his effort straight at Aaron McCarey whilst Conor McMenamin picked up Luke McCullough's long pass before cutting inside the left back and shooting straight at Rory Brown.
Conor McMenamin always looked the most likely to break the deadlock and he had another opportunity on 63 minutes when he burst forward and got a fortunate bounce of the ball off Sean Ward before firing narrowly over the crossbar. With 17 minutes remaining Glenavon were reduced to 10 men. Jack Malone seemed to knock Bobby Burns to the ground with the referee just awarding a throw in. Jordan Stewart then ran across to needlessly get involved, violently shoving Burns with both hands. Referee Ben McMaster waited until the melee died down before producing a straight card for Stewart.
As the game entered its final stages Conor McMenamin saw his shot scrambled off the line and then his cross headed wide by substitute, Danny Purkis. In stoppage time McMenamin put another great delivery into the area which Junior failed to connect with and Rory Brown grabbed the ball before Shay McCartan could pounce. The final chance came when McCartan played another ball into the area but Junior headed over.
Photographs by PACEMAKER.
Glentoran: McCarey, Marshall, Singleton, McCullough, Wilson (c), Devlin, Burns (Purkis 79), Plum (McCartan 61), McGinn (Junior 21), J. Donnelly & McMenamin