Glentoran U20 1-1 Glenavon U20
Sunday 22 April 2018
Glentoran U20s played their final league game of the season this afternoon at a sun drenched Oval against Andy Mathieson’s Glenavon.
Two young sides played out an entertaining 1-1 draw that sees Glentoran sitting 6 points and a plus 7 goal difference ahead of Crusaders in fourth place - the Crues have two games left to play and may well yet pip the Glens on goal difference but even if that happens, Glentoran will finish higher than last season with quite probably the youngest squad in the league - which gives the lads a lot of confidence that next season can be a successful one.
The Glens still have the George Wilson Cup to play and are away to Newry City U20 on the 2nd of May looking to seal a place in the Quarter Final.
Back to today’s action however and the Glens looked lively early on as Cricky Conn and Conall Delaney both tested the Glenavon keeper early on.
Paul O’Neill, making his first appearance in a month due to injury, opened the scoring on 20 minutes when McKenna set Conn free down the left, Conn weaved his magic and found O’Neill in the box who finished well.
The Glens peppered the Glenavon goal for long periods in the first half but the finishing left a lot to be desired as they fired straight at Glenavon’s keeper on four occassions and Conn saw a terrific header smash off the bar.
The Glens were then hit with a sucker punch when a long ball over the Glens back four was latched onto by the Glenavon forward and he fired low across goal into the far corner for 1-1 a minute before half time. Half Time 1-1
The Glens dominated possession in the second half but lacked a cutting edge with O’Neill playing his way back to fitness and Tipping, Truesdale and last week’s man of the match Eamon McLaughlin all missing through injury.
The Glens had several attempts to find the elusive winner but came closest when Conn wriggled free of the left and clipped a shot over the keeper onto the cross bar before O’Neill’s hooked rebound was cleared off the line.
Glenavon’s centre backed saved a certain goal minutes later with a fantastic last ditch sliding block.
One bright spark from a disapointing day was the debuts for young Caolan McBride and Seamus Duffy from our under 15s - two massively talented boys who acquitted themselves very well in the game and Seamus could have grabbed the winner with a dipping shot from 20 yards towards the top corner that the Glenavon keeper did well to stop.
In the end the Glens had to settle for a share of the spoils and now await the outcome of the Crues last two games to see where we will finish in the table. Full Time 1-1
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Tre Sterling 5. James McCarthy 6. Sean Gallagher 7. Conall Delaney 8. Jack Henderson 9. Paul O’Neill 10. Darryl McKenna 11. Christopher Conn
Subs: 12. Dan Smith (Gallagher 45) 13. Caolan McBride (McKenna 60) 14. Seamus Duffy (Delaney 70)
Coleraine U20 1 - 2 Glentoran U20
Saturday 14 April 2018
Glentoran faced Coleraine for the third time this season and secured their first win over the Bannsiders with a hard fought and well deserved victory.
The two sides drew 2-2 at The Oval in October before the Glens lost in January up in Coleraine and it was a return to the University of Ulster pitch today for the wee Glens as they sought to set the record straight against Coleraine.
The Glens enjoyed long periods of possession as the impressive midfield pairing of Jack Henderson and man of the match Eamon McLaughlin ran the show, allowing Ross Tharma, Conall Delaney and Josh Tipping to look dangerous in the Coleraine area.
The Glens went close early on as Tipping flicked a cross goalward but it was well saved by the Coleraine stopper.
Tipping then barged his way through and square for Truesdale whose shot was well blocked.
Tipping again was in the thick of the action as he had a good shot blocked for a corner.
Delaney jinked his way through to fire just wide before he set Tipping free on the edge of the area, the big target man swivelled and slipped in Tharma who fired into the roof of the net for 1-0.
The Glens lost Tipping at half time to injury and also lost captain McCarthy who hurt an ankle when making a fantastic last ditch tackle right on half time. Half time 0-1
Dean Truesdale joined the ranks of the walking wounded as he succumbed to injury five minutes into the second half and that meant all three subs had bee made within 50 minutes.
Coleraine enjoyed more possession in the second half and levelled the tie at 1-1 from the penalty spot mid-way through the half.
Glentoran were not to be denied and Eamon McLaughlin fired home a winner 15 minutes from time to seal a deserved and hard fought three points. Full time 1-2
1. Paul McLa ughlin 2. Mal Smith3. Jamie Glover 4. Lewis McGarvey 5. James McCarthy 6. Jack Henderson 7. Ross Tharma 8. Eamon McLaughlin 9. Josh Tipping 10. Conall Delaney 11. Dean Truesdale
Subs: 12. Jamie Craig (fTipping 45) 13. Sean Gallagher ( McCarthy 45) 14. Darryl McKenna (Truesdale 50)
Glentoran U20 4-0 Warrenpoint Town U20
Wednesday 11 April 2018
Glentoran strolled through this U20 encounter with Warrenpoint in what was their penultimate home league game this season.
The Glens dominated possession throughout and created an early opening through Truesdale as he fired just wide before McCawl forced a save from the Point keeper.
McMullan forced another fine save from the keeper before Truesdale opened the scoring with a low left foot drive mid-way through the half.
Eoghan McCawl doubled the lead with a swerving shot from 18 yards. Half time 2-0
Glentoran made it three five minutes into the second half when McMullan finished after a Tipping lay off
Tipping almost made it four with a cheeky back heel that was cleared off the line before Truesdale rifled a shot off the post
McNicholl finished well at the back post from a Conn cross for 4-0
The Glens had three goals disallowed for off-sides in the second half and came close to adding to their tally of four on several occasions but wont complain about a four goal victory and a clean sheet!
Between the posts on Wednesday night was u15 goalkeeper Ryan Dalzell, Ryan who has just turned 15, made a couple of very good saves to maintain the clean sheet in what was a very competent debut from the young stopper Full time 4-0
1. Ryan Dalzell 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover4 . Lewis McGarvey 5. James McCarthy 6. Tre Sterling 7. Tiarnan McNicholl 8. Corey McMullan 9. Dean Truesdale 10. Eoghan McCawl 11. Conall Delaney
Subs: 12. Josh Tipping (McGarvey 45) 13. Christopher Conn (Truesdale 60) 14. Jack Henderson (Smith 70)
Ballymena UnitedU20 1-1 Glentoran U20
Wednesday 21st March2018
As has become the story of this season for the Wee Glens Ballymena grabbed a last minute equaliser in this u20 contest that Glentoran had led since the 17th minute when Lewis McGarvey finished well at the back post from a corner.
The big 16 year old centre back capped a super all round display with the cool finish from Conn’s corner which came 5 minutes after Dean Truesdale had cannoned a shot against Ballymena’s right hand post
Soon after McGarvey’s opener Jack Henderson almost doubled the Glens advantage when he crashed a right foot shot off the cross bar from 20 yards.
The Glens were well on top in the opening stages and should have had a penalty when Mal Smith was brought down when well placed to score but the ref inexplicably waved play on.
Ballymena’s first sight at goal on 37 minutes saw them fire into the side netting from an acute angle. Half time 0-1
In the second half Glentoran continued to play all the football and created more openings as Tipping had a header just over and seen a right footed snap shot well saved.
Christopher Conn fired over the bar from 20 yards and Sean Gallagher had a low drive well blocked from a corner.
The Glens looked lively on the counter attack but Emmett Friars experience kept Ballymena in the game and is often the case when a team doesnt take their chances the Glens paid the price when a deflected shot on 89 minutes found its way into the Glentoran net for a very late equaliser. A special mention for Mal Smith at right back who was awesome from start to finish and had his best game for Glentoran at this level. Full time 1-1
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Craig 4. Lewis McGarvey 5. James McCarthy 6. Jack Henderson 7. Nathan Best 8. Sean Gallagher 9. Dean Truesdale 10. Eamon McLaughlin 11. Christopher Conn
Subs. 12. Josh Tipping (McCarthy 60) 14. Darryl McKenna (for Best 70) 15. Jamie Glover (Conn 75)
Glentoran U20 2-1 Linfield U20
Wednesday 21st March2018
For the first time this season the U20 Big Two Derby featured both sides playing a young team with Linfield averaging a year older than the Glens but both well under the maximum 20 year age limit. Two well matched teams made for a terrific encounter.
Both teams attempted to play good football with a very high intensity to the game from the off.
As is typical in Big Two games there was no quarter asked for given on either side as the tackles flew but the game was played in a good spirit throughout with no cards brandished by the referee across the 90.
The Glens enjoyed long spells on possession in the opening period but both defenses were on top in the first half with James McCarthy in particular turning in an outstanding display in the heart of the Glentoran back four.
Chances were at a premium but mid-way through the half McNicholl warmed the gloves of the Linfield keeper from 30 yards before Delaney shot just wide.
Soon after the Glens made the breakthrough when Dean Truesdale, making his first appearance against his former club, whipped a free kick in from the right that evaded everyone and flew into the net at the back post.
Linfield came close in the closing stages when a free header was sent skyward and into the East Belfast evening sky from a corner. Half time 1-0
The second half saw Glentoran start well and at a high intensity, playing some good football much in the same manner as the first half with Conall Delaney having more of an influence in the proceedings but gradually Linfield, looking to get back into the game, started to go more direct in their approach and turned the Glens back four at every opportunity and the Glens began to sit deeper and invited the mounting Linfield pressure.
Paul McLaughlin made two superb saves tipping a fierce free kick onto the cross bar before a fantastic reflex save from a point blank volley inside the six yard box brought Linfield a corner.
Five minutes from time Linfield scored what had been the inevitable equaliser and it looked like another late goal would cost the young Glens.
However the goal sparked the right reaction in Glentoran and they immediately moved up through the gears and pinned Linfield back forcing a couple of corners before a fantastic pass from Eamon McLaughlin released McNicholl on 88, McNicholl pulled the ball back and Ross Tharma strode into the box in off the left to slam home the winner
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith3. Jamie Glover 4. James Ferrin 5. James McCarthy 6. Jack Henderson 7. Nathan Best 8. Sean Gallagher 9. Tiarnan McNicholl 10. Conall Delaney 11. Dean Truesdale
Subs: 12. Eamon McLaughlin (for Best 45) 13. Ross Tharma (for Truesdale 65) 14. Darryl McKenna (for Gallagher 85)
Not used: Kai Wardlow, Lewis McGarvey
Glentoran U20 5-5 Carrick Rangers U20
Wednesday 7th March2018
Glentoran and Carrick shared the points and ten goals between them at the Oval tonight in a thrilling U20 encounter.
The game was in doubt 24 hours earlier but thanks to the excellent work of our groundsman the game got the go ahead and what a treat it was for the spectator!
The Glens have had a very up and down season with a young side and this was all summed up in one evening tonight. Two weeks ago the boys were superb against Ards, last week we suffered a drubbing at Solitude and tonight we witnessed both the best and worst of our young team in the course of ninety.
3-1 down at the break the Glens were excellent in the second half and should have had the game out of sight before Carrick hit a 95th minute equaliser.
That seemed an eternity away from Carrick opening the scoring in the first half when a low cross was glanced in across the keeper from a set piece.
Five minutes later it was 2 when a mix up between McCarthy and Anderson led to Carrick’s forward nipping in to finish.
This seemed to stir the Glens into life and a minute later it was 2-1 when McNicholl’s cross was met with a bullet like header from Paul O’Neill into the top corner.
The Glens could have equalised through Tipping but he elected to pass rather than pull the trigger and the chance was lost, then he glanced a header goal wards that was well blocked.
Just before half time Carrick made it three from a break away that was poorly defended and Carrick had an unmarked back post tap in. Half Time Glentoran U20 1-3 Carrick Rangers U20
Glentoran shuffled the pack at half time with Conall Delaney coming inside and Cricky Conn coming into the fray and the little livewire made an instant impact to set the tone for the second half as he drifted past four Carrick players and shot just wide.
The Glens blitzed Carrick with three goals in ten minutes early in the half as Dean Truesdale scored one and set two on a plate for Conn to put the Glens 4-3 in front.
Soon after Josh Tipping burst into the box and was taken down by the keeper for a penalty - the big front man’s luck in front of goal has deserted him over the last few games and that continued as the keeper saved his resulting penalty.
Ten minutes later Carrick converted a penalty of their own, 4-4.
The Glens went close again through Tipping, once with a looping header and once with a shot across the face of goal.
Carrick forced a flurry of corners before Eamon McLaughlin struck the pass of the game on 87 for Truesdale to race through and put the Glens 5-4 up.
There was still time for a sucker punch from Carrick right at the death as a scramble at the back post from a corner was bundled in for 5-5 Full Time Glentoran U20 5-5 Carrick Rangers U20
1. Matthew Anderson 2. Daniel Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Jack Maguire 5. James McCarthy 6. Sean Gallagher 7. Tiarnan McNicholl 8. Eamon McLaughlin 9. Paul O’Neill 10. Josh Tipping 11. Conall Delaney
Subs: Dean Truesdale (O’Neill 40) Christopher Conn (Gallagher 45) Kai Wardlow (Smith 65)
Ards U20 0-2 Glentoran U20
Wednesday 21st February 2018
Glentoran faced Ards for the third time this season having yet to taste victory over our North Down neighbours this season.
Ards are a class outfit at this level and currently sit one place above the Glens in third in the table so it was always going to be a tough test.
The young Glens were determined to set the record straight after two disappointing performances against Ards and started very brightly as they pressed all over the park and didnt let them settle on the ball.
Sean Gallagher and Jack Henderson’s blossoming partnership in the middle of the park shone again as they dictated the game for Glentoran feeding the front four who were a handful for Ards.
Nathan Best was getting the better of the left back in the early exchanges as he turned in his best display to date at this level in the green, red and black and was a constant thorn in Ards side.
Tipping and O’Neill continued to grow their understanding as a pair up top as both start to return to full fitness and it was Paul who broke the dead lock as he latched on to a fantastic pass from Mal Smith to slam home passed the keeper.
Christopher Conn returned to the starting eleven after a week spent with Burnley and showed his class in the first half as he ran at the Ards right back at every opportunity - to Ards credit they were equal to everything the Glens could throw at them for the remainder of the half. Half Time Ards U20 0-1 Glentoran U20
The second half saw Glentoran start with the same purpose and drive and Tipping almost doubled the lead but the ball just wouldnt sit for him to get a good shot off after a brilliant volleyed cross from O’Neill.
Christopher Conn then weaved his magic as he slalomed past two Ards defenders and around the keeper to fire the ball into the net only for the linesman to flag for a hotly disputed off side
The Glens did double their lead however when Henderson was brought down 30 yards from goal - Conn whipped in a superb cross that was met with a bullet header by Skipper McCarthy.
Glentoran managed the remainder of the game and came away with a comfortable clean sheet after Paul McLaughlin made a smart low save at his near post from Ards’ closest attempt ten minute from the end. Final Score Ards U20 0-2 Glentoran U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Jack Maguire 5. James McCarthy (1) 6. Sean Og Gallagher 7. Nathan Best 8. Jack Henderson 9. Paul O’Neill (1) 10. Josh Tipping 11. Christopher Conn
Subs: Kai Wardlow ( Gallagher 65) Lewis McGarvey (Smith 70) Darryl Mckenna (for Conn 70)
Glentoran U20 0-1 Crusaders U20
Wednesday 14th February 2018
The Wee Glens took on Crusaders at the Oval on Wednesday evening with a youthful side. We were dominant throughout in terms of possession but paid the price for some inexperience in dealing with the physical presence of Mikel Suarez early on.
Credit to our young back four who quickly got to grips with the challenge of Suarez and Michael Carvill and restricted Crusaders to very few chances for the remainder of the contest. However some hesitancy from an early corner lead to Suarez bundling home the only goal of the game after five minutes.
Glentoran welcomed back Jack Henderson and Jamie Glover from International duty and Henderson dictated the game in midfield with an excellent display. Henderson and U18 Skipper Sean Gallagher gelled well in midfield and allowed Glentoran to control possession and play some excellent football throughout.
James McCarthy made his first start in four games after returning from an ankle injury and could have equalised when he headed against the bar from a corner in the Glens first sight of goal.
They were soon to have another when O’Neill curled just wide after a smart lay off from Tipping.
Tipping and O’Neill linked well again to tee up McKenna and his back post cross was cleared off the head of Truesdale as Crusaders goal beckoned.
Mal Smith was next to go close, this time from distance as he curled an effort just over after another Tipping lay off. Half Time Glentoran U20 0-1 Crusaders U20
Paul O’Neill had the first sight of goal in the second half as he glanced a header wide of the far post before a great one two between him and Tipping sent Paul through on goal only for the ref to call play back for a free kick to Glentoran for a foul on Tipping. O’Neill saw the resulting free kick comfortably saved.
O’Neill was a constant menace to the Crues but unfortunately couldnt find the finish his performance deserved and fired another effort over the bar on 75 mins
Nathan Best came close when he raced through after a swift counter attack but a brilliant covering tackle saw the ball blocked out for a corner.
From the resulting corner Truesdale almost forced an equaliser but the game fizzled out to a 1-0 defeat despite a very encouraging performance with some excellent football played. Full Time Glentoran U20 0-1 Crusaders U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Jack Maguire 5. James McCarthy 6. Sean Gallagher 7. Darryl McKenna 8. Jack Henderson 9. Josh Tipping 10. Paul O’Neill 11. Dean Truesdale
Subs: Nathan Best (McKenna 65) Alex Lalor (Tipping 70) Ross Tharma (Maguire 75)
Glentoran U20 3-1 Dungannon Swifts U20
Saturday 10 February 2018
Glentoran dominated this game from start to finish but laboured in front of goal for an hour before the impressive Eoghan McCawl broke the deadlock with a back post header.
The Glens started the game brightly when Dean Truesdale raced clear but saw his shot come back off the post. Truesdale was bundled over by the keeper when going for the rebound but the referee waved away Glentoran protests and Dungannon escaped.
The last time Paul O’Neill and Josh Tipping played up front together in Glentoran shirts it was the under 16 NIBFA Cup Final with them bagging 6 goals between them! They instantly sparked off the relationship where it left off as Josh flicked on a lovely pass from Delaney for O’Neill who fired just over.
O’Neill then fed Tipping who turned in the box and spread it wide to Nathan Best whose cross fizzed across the face of goal begging for a tap in.
Tipping and O’Neill linked well again on 15 mins with the latter being brought down for a free kick.
Best took the set piece and curled a great cross onto the head of O’Neill who converted with a powerful header only for the ref to blow up for offside
Tipping was forced to hobble off after a clash of knees on 25 and was replaced by McKenna - McKenna looked busy and soon had an effort just wide
The game drifted to half time with few more openings being created leaving the coaching staff asking for a higher tempo second half. Half Time Glentoran U20 0-0 Dungannon Swifts U20
That was duly delivered when Tre Sterling moved up into midfield and he stamped his authority on the game as Glentoran took more control.
Sterling forced the ball to McKenna whose shot was tipped over and from the resulting corner McCawl made the break through.
The Glens quickly added a second through a fierce shot from Truesdale. The points were made safe when Ross Tharma picked the ball up on the left and cut inside to shoot low from 18 yards into the corner.
Dungannon had time to grab a consolation from a free kick when an unfortunate slip from Ferrin allowed the ball to run through to their striker to finish well. Full Time Glentoran U20 3-1 Dungannon Swifts U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Kai Wardlow 4. Tre Sterling 5. James Ferrin 6. Eoghan McCawl 7. Nathan Best 8. Conall Delaney 9. Josh Tipping 10. Paul O’Neill11. Dean Truesdale
Subs: Darryl McKenna (Tipping 25) Jack Maguire (Best 60) Ross Tharma (Truesdale 70)
Coleraine U20 3-0 Glentoran U20
Saturday 26 January 2018
The returned Josh Tipping
Glentoran U20 came off the back of an excellent display on Tuesday night with a very young side against a Carrick team fielding 8 first team players, so the players travelled to Coleraine with a lot of confidence despite a few changes to the team from the Carrick game.
Out went Jonathan Smith and Tre Sterling from the first team squad and also missing was Darryl McKenna and the 2 goal Christopher Conn. The influential James McCarthy and Paul O’Neill remained sidelined through injury.
We were able to welcome into the panel the returning Josh Tipping for his first game back in a Glentoran shirt after deciding to leave Chesterfield in September. It has been a long wait to get Josh freed up to play and for his international clearance to come through but it was great to see him back home in red, green and black.
Also into the squad came U18 Captain Sean Gallagher and central defender Lewis McGarvey moved into the starting line up with Kai Wardlow returning to the squad after illness.
The coaching staff were confident of a good away performance to build on the good work from Tuesday night but it wasnt to be as the Glens struggled to cope with the conditions and dreadful playing surface and too many players were off their game at the same time.
After a slow start where the Glens could and probably should have conceded one spot kick before giving away a stone wall penalty - converted with aplomb by the Coleraine striker - the Glens rallied and started to find the dangerous Truesdale on the left.
Truesdale and Tipping linked well for our first chance as Josh showed he has lost none of his strikers instinct as he drifted away from two markers to fashion a scoring opportunity that was eventually well saved by the Coleraine stopper.
Tipping grew into the game and was at the centre of most of Glentoran’s dangerous play in the first half as he linked well with McLaughlin for a wayward effort from the midfielder before setting Truesdale through but his shot was blocked for a corner.
The Glens forced a series of corners and Tipping almost broke his duck when the keeper missed a delivery but it came too quickly for Josh to adjust his feet.
Sean Gallagher was next to test the Coleraine keeper as he tipped his powerful header onto the bar.
Against the run of play Coleraine broke and all too easily grabbed a second when one long ball beat Glentoran’s entire defence and their striker slid the ball home.
The Glens struggled all day to deal with Coleraine’s direct style but credit must got to Coleraine for dealing with the conditions better as they played football in the right areas and put the ball i to dangerous positions as opposed to the Glens who over played in the middle of the park often losing the ball in the sticky, bobbly pitch.
The Glens were put under real pressure in the middle by the outstanding Whiteside in the Coleraine midfield and the Glens failed to settle.
One bright spark in the first half saw Henderson feed McLaughlin whose excellent disguised reverse pass found Tipping in space but again the number 9’s effort was well saved. Half time Coleraine U20 2-0 Glentoran U20
In the second half Glentoran started with a bit more purpose after a change in formation and some stern words at half time and were building momentum in the game when another long ball caught us cold for 3-0.
The game was effectively over as a contest when Glentoran lost centre back Eoin Lundy to a nasty knee injury and had to play the remaining 25 minutes with ten men having made three subs already.
A very disappointing day all round for Glentoran and a harsh lesson for the young players in adapting to conditions - a quirk of the fixtures has Glentoran away to Coleraine again next Saturday with a perfect opportunity to improve. Full time Coleraine U20 3-0 Glentoran U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Lewis McGarvey 5. Eoin Lundy 6. Sean Gallagher 7. Nathan Best 8. Eamon McLaughlin 9. Josh Tipping 10. Jack Henderson 11. Dean Truesdale
Subs: Barry Baggley (Best 50) Kai Wardlow (Henderson 60) Ben Cushnie (Tipping 65)
Glentoran U20 3-4 Carrick Rangers U20
Tuesday 23 January January 2018
Tonight's goalscorers, Cristopher "Cricky" Conn and Dean Truesdale.
This under 20 tie was Glentoran’s first game since the 4-1 home win over Ballinamallard 10 days ago and it was to be a real test as the Glens lined out with our youngest team of the season to date against a Carrick side bolstered by no fewer than 8 recognised first team players with 5 of the starting line up having played in the 1-1 draw at Taylor’s Avenue just before Christmas in the Danske Bank Premiership along with three new January signings.
Glentoran’s kids were not over-awed however after Carrick started quickly out of the blocks the Glens grew into the game and played some excellent football in the opening 30 minutes - fashioning three good scoring opportunities to take the lead.
The Glens inevitably tired a little as the half wore on and Carrick capitalised scoring a super counter attack goal when Central African Republic International Ralph Kottoy sent on loan Linfield player Eamon Scannell clear down the left and he centred for Ryan Nimmick to score at the back post. Half time score Glentoran U20 1-1 Carrick Rangers U20
Glentoran started the second half well but it was Carrick who scored again when a similar move saw highly experienced former Glentoran striker Darren Henderson cut across Eoin Lundy to make it 2-0.
Glentoran continued to play some very good football and looked confident and composed beyond their years with Eamon McLaughlin starring in midfield but the introduction of U20 talisman Christopher “Cricky” Conn turned the game on its head.
Within 30 seconds of coming Conn had left Aaron Smyth for dead and square towards Truesdale whose shot was blocked for a corner.
Two minutes later though Conn cut inside from the left again and Curled a brilliant effort into the far corner from 20 yards. Game on!
The Glens pressed looking for the equaliser and came close again through Jonathan Smith but again it was Carrick who scored next when an almost identical goal from Henderson made it 3-1.
The Glens refused to lie down and Conn conjured up more magic as he dropped into midfield drove forward with the ball and split the Carrick defence for Smith to drive through on goal to square the ball to Dean Truesdale for a debut goal for the big Newry born front man. Just reward for Dean for a hard working performance.
Carrick now looked tired and as the Glens threw on 15 year old Barry Baggley into an advanced midfield area this signalled the intention to get back level as Barry, despite his tender years has incredible creativity.Barry was involved in the build up of our next attack which resulted in a free kick. Up stepped Conn. 22 yards out he curled the ball into the far corner of the goal, 3-3!
The dream come back was almost complete on 88 when a fantastic flowing move resulted in McLaughlin lofting a ball over the Carrick back line for Baggley who took it brilliantly on his first touch and sent it destined for the top corner only for Carrick’s keeper to get finger tips to it and send it over for a corner.
There was to be one last sting in the tail as Carrick were awarded a set piece on 92 minutes which caused chaos in the Glentoran box before Darren Henderson stabbed home his hat-trick goal for 4-3.
A disappointing end to a very entertaining match for Glentoran but the players can be very proud of their efforts given the squad contained 7 players aged 16 or younger, 5 17 year olds and 3 players aged 18 with only one player, Smith in his 20s. Promising for the future that the boys can go up against such experience and compete well - an indication of the inexperience of the squad being that Mal Smith at just 16 Captained the team this evening. Full time score Glentoran U20 3-4 Carrick Rangers U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Tre Sterling 5. Eoin Lundy 6. Eamon McLaughlin 7. Nathan Best 8. Jack Henderson 9. Dean Truesdale 10. Jonathan Smith 11. Darryl McKenna
Subs: Cricky Conn (McKenna, 60) Lewis McGarvey (Sterling, 60) Barry Baggley (Best, 70)
Not used: Sean Gallagher, Jamie Craig
Goals: Conn (2), Truesdale
Glentoran U20 4-1 Ballinamallard U20
Saturday 13th January 2018
Glentoran had a few injuries and players unavailable this week which gave an opportunity to players to step up from the under 18s with Eoin Lundy starting the game and Ben Cushnie, Sean Gallagher and Lewis McGarvey named amongst the substitutes.
Also on the bench was 14 year old goalkeeper Ryan Dalzell who came in as cover for Matthew Anderson who in turn was deputising for Paul McLaughlin who made the his first trip with the first team squad to Fermanagh in place of the ill Dwayne Nelson.
The first half was a bit of a non event with Anderson making one good save for the Glens while the Glens failed to translate their dominance in possession into goals. Half Time Glentoran U20 0-0 Ballinamallard U20
A reshuffle at half time released the impressive Mal Smith and Jamie Glover further forward as wing backs as Mark Lowe dropped in to make a three at the back and it wasnt long before the added width opened up the Mallards defence with Glover cutting in and finding Conn who made no mistake.
Mal Smith added the second after a surgin run. Christopher Conn made in 3 soon after.
Steven Gordon added the gloss to the win an audascious lob from 25 yards for 4-0
Ballinamallard pulled one back a few minutes from time when a well struck free kick came back off the post and was tapped in by their alert strike-force. Full Time Glentoran U20 4-1 Ballinamallard U20
1. Matthew Anderson 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie glover 4. Eoin Lundy 5. James McCarthy 6. Mark Lowe 7. Corey McMullan 8. Jack Henderson 9. Christopher Conn 10. Conall Delaney 11. Steven Gordon
Subs: Kai Wardlow (McCarthy) Sean Gallagher (Henderson) Cushnie for Delaney
Goals: Conn (2), Gordon, Smith
Warrenpoint Town U20 2-3 Glentoran U20
Saturday 6th January 2018
The Under 20s travelled to Warrenpoint today looking to bounce back from a disappointing performance last time out against Linfield and made a strong start to the game playing some excellent football in the first half hour.
Mark Lowe and Jack Henderson pulled the strings in midfield as the Glens forced Warrenpoint back into their own half and created several chances for Paul O'Neill and Conall Delaney who forced great saves out of the Point keeper. Henderson also tested the keeper with a smashing low effort before James Ferrin and then Tre Sterling headed just over.
Just as it looked like the Glens would go into half time with nothing to show for their efforts, they found a breakthrough with James Ferrin after his initial header was saved, he bundled the rebound into the net.
Two minutes later it was 2-0 when O'Neill raced onto Sterling's clearance to round the keeper and finish.
On the stroke of half time it was 3 as 'Point failed to clear a corner and it came to the back post to Ferrin who slammed the ball across the keeper into the net.
The 3-0 half time lead was just what Glentoran deserved for their first half performance and dominance. Half time Warrenpoint Town U20 0-3 Glentoran U20
The Glens lost McCarthy at half time to a knock and the early change in the second half withdrawing Henderson seemed to unravel the Glens shape and allowed Warrenpoint space to play and they grew into the game, enjoying spells of prolonged possession.
Glentoran defended well and Paul McLaughlin was largely a spectator as the Glens tried to pick off more goals on the counter attack. A combination of wasteful finishing and a lowering in the tempo of the performance lead to a second half struggle and when Warrenpoint grabbed a goal back with ten minutes to play after a long range effort it gave them something to play for.
Two minutes into added time Point scored a second from a corner to leave a grandstand final two minutes in which the Glens just managed to eek out a win from a game that they should have seen through more comfortably.
A valuable lesson for the young players in the importance of playing on the front foot and pressing home your advantage in a game when on top, credit to Warrenpoint for a strong second half display Full time Warrenpoint Town U20 2-3 Glentoran U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. James McCarthy 4. Tre Sterling 5. James Ferrin 6. Mark Lowe 7. Nathan Best 8. Jack Henderson 9. Paul O'Neill 10. Conall Delaney 11. Kai Wardlow
Subs: 12. Sean Wallace (McCarthy 45) 13. Daryl McKenna (Henderson 55) 14. Eoin Lundy (Smith 65)
Linfield U20 5-1 Glentoran U20
Wednesday 27th December 2017
Glentoran U20 were brought back down to earth with a bump in Bangor this evening. After a fine 3-0 win over Cliftonville in their last outing, the Wee Glens endured a nightmare first half against a Linfield team containing experienced out of favour first teamers Jimmy Callacher, Jordan Stewart, Louis Rooney and on loan QPR striker Brandon Adams. The Glens team included Ross Redman in his first game after injury plus Tiarnan McNicholl and Steven Gordon but lost the in form Jonathan Smith to first team duty..
The Wee Glens went a goal behind inside ten minutes after clever link up play by Jordan Stewart on the right ended in a low cross that was finished well by Linfield’s striker.
We were rocked further five minutes later when Stewart again got free down the right before cutting across and working the ball over to Linfield’s overlapping full back who finished well across Paul McLaughlin. The keeper then had a moment he will want to forget ten minutes later as he got caught under a speculative lob that he could only parry into his own goal.
After half an hour it was four as the Glens struggled to get to grips with Linfield’s movement in the final third.
The Glens scored what would only be a consolation soon after when Paul O’Neill pounced on a mistake to make it 4-1.
Shortly before half time the scoring for the evening was finished when Linfield’s left winger slammed in at the near post. Half Time: Linfield U20 5-1 Glentoran U20
The Glens rallied in the second half and enjoyed some periods of prolonged possession with the introduction of Conn and Henderson adding to the forward momentum but the Glens couldn’t fashion any clear cut openings to cut the deficit and so the game petered out to a 5-1 defeat.
A tough night for Glentoran but the boys will hope to bounce back on Saturday at home to Dungannon Swifts. Full Time: Linfield U20 5-1 Glentoran U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Ross Redman 4. Podraig Hughes 5. James McCarthy 6. Mark Lowe 7. Tiarnan McNicholl 8. Eddie Shaw 9. Paul O’Neill 10. Steven Gordon 11. Conall Delaney
Subs: Christopher Conn (O’Neill 45) Jack Henderson (McNicholl 50) Kai Wardlow (Lowe 55)
Glentoran U20 3-0 Cliftonville U20
Wednesday 20 December 2017
The table topping Reds came to the Oval on Wednesday evening for an Under 20 clash with a Glentoran side that hadn’t kicked a ball in anger since 6th December.
The Glens made three changes from that side with Garrett back in the first team fold and Wardlow and Wallace rotated to the bench. In came Henderson, Glover and Conn.
The Glens were a little rusty as they took a few minutes to settle into the game but thankfully Paul McLaughlin was on his mettle from the off and made three fine stops inside the first fifteen minutes.
The Glens settled into their rhythm in the game and took control of proceedings after the shaky start and found a strong foothold in the game when Jonathan Smith pounced to put the home side in front after a flowing move.
Mid-way through the half it was 2-0 when the outstanding Mark Lowe took a quick free kick to Cricky Conn who finished superbly to double the Glens' advantage.
The Glens moved the ball around well at times but failed to find a further break through before the break. Half time Glentoran U20 2-0 Cliftonville U20
The Glens almost added a third a minute into the second half when Conn wriggled free to find O’Neill whose shot was well saved and after that chances were at a premium as the reds forced a series or corners but never really troubled McLaughlin in the Glentoran goal.
The Glens managed the game well and restricted the reds to half chances and looked to capitalise on the break. Conn and Lowe went close to adding to the advantage before Smith saw a dipping long ranger drift just wide.
Ten minutes from time Paul O’Neill secured the points for the Glens as he raced in behind the reds defence to finish coolly after a fine ball from Lowe. Final score Glentoran U20 3-0 Cliftonville U20
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Podraig Hughes (c) 5. Tre Sterling 6. Mark Lowe 7. Conall Delaney 8. Jack Henderson 9. Paul O’Neill 10. Jonathan Smith 11. Christopher Conn
Subs: Darryl McKenna (Henderson 60) Sean Wallace ( Conn 70) Dan Smith (Glover 75)
Not used: Kai Wardlow Nathan Best
Glentoran U20 3-3 Crusaders U20
Wednesday 6 December 2017
Glentoran went behind after just five minutes of this Belfast derby when Crusaders played right through the middle of the park to set their striker one v one with Paul McLaughlin in the Glentoran goal.
This seemed to spur the Glens into action however and Glentoran proceeded to dominate the following 40 minutes until half time.
In that 40 minute spell the Glens found the net twice through Sean Wallace and Willie Garrett with his second goal in as many games. But the Glens couldn’t make their superiority tell further and had to settle for a half time 2-1 lead. Half Time: Glentoran U20 2-1 Crusaders U20
The second half started in much the same vein but the Glens failed to add that killer third goal at a time when it would have seen off Crusaders and instead the Crues found a way back into the game when Glentoran gave away a cheap penalty.
Paul McLaughlin made a terrific save from the spot kick but the referee ordered it to be re-taken, much to the bewilderment of all in attendance and this time the Crues player buried it into the other corner for 2-2.
The Glens reacted well and went back in front inside ten minutes through Podraig Hughes but instead of building on their dominant first half display and extending the lead, Glentoran stuttered again and allowed Crusaders a foothold in the game eventually leading to them forcing an equaliser in the 88th minute of what was an entertaining encounter. Full Time: Glentoran U20 3-3 Crusaders U20
Team: 1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Kai Wardlow 4. William Garrett (1) 5. Podraig Hughes (1) 6. Mark Lowe 7. Conall Delaney 8. Tre Sterling 9. Paul O’Neill 10. Jonathan Smith 11. Sean Wallace (1)
Subs: Darryl McKenna (J. Smith 45) Steven Gordon (Lowe 45) Jack Henderson (O’Neill 70)
Ards U20 3-2 Glentoran U20
Wednesday 29 November 2017
Glentoran U20 lost 3-2 in North Down this evening in an entertaining, end to end affair at Londonderry Park.
Ards took an early lead when a counter attack down the left led to a cross into the middle for Ards advancing full back to finish low into Paul McLaughlin’s goal.
The Glens weathered the early storm from Ards and had Paul McLaughlin to thank for keeping it 1-0 with a couple of fine saves but steadily the Glens grew into the game and levelled after a piece of magic on the left from Conn found the head of Paul O’Neill who powered home.
Half time Ards 1-1Glentoran
Glentoran started the second half on top playing some lovely football with Eddie Shaw impressing in the middle after replacing the injured Darryl McKenna. It didn’t take long for the Glens to make their superiority tell by taking a 2-1 lead and it came from the boot of the returning Willie Garrett who slammed a 25 yard free kick into the Ards goal.
Glentoran continued to press and play some nice football but as frustration grew at the lack of real goal scoring chances created the Glens began to give the ball away cheaply and Ards came back strongly into the game as their impressive young side hit their stride again in the second half.
A delivery from the right was met with a free header to make it 2-2 midway through the half and Ards were looking the stronger team at this stage and capitalised again to re-take the lead when Paul McLaughlin made a brilliant save but Ards reacted quickest to pounce on the loose ball to finish for 3-2
The Glens took the initiative again in the game but couldn’t find a way through the Ards rearguard for a third time having left themselves too much to do to salvage a point Full time Ards 3-2 Glentoran
1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Kai Wardlow 4. William Garrett (1) 5. James McCarthy 6. Mark Lowe 7. Darryl McKenna 8. Jack Henderson 9. Nathan Best 10. Paul O’Neill (1) 11. Christopher Conn
Subs: Eddie Shaw (McKenna 45) Craig Baird for Wardlow (65) Podraig Hughes for Garrett (75)
Glentoran U20 8-1 Dunmurry Young Men
Tuesday 21 November 2017
Glentoran U20 took advantage of a break in league games to arrange a home friendly in order to give game time to a number of u18 players, and also provide much needed game time to some first team panelists including Willie Garrett who is stepping up his return from long term injury. U20 regulars Mark Lowe, Darryl McKenna, Podraig Hughes, and Paul O'Neill all missed the game through injury while Christopher Conn was sick. That in turns gave an opportunity for some younger players to step up and they clearly rose to the challenge.
We are very grateful to Dunmurry Young Men who agreed to take the fixture at short notice and the Amateur League 1B side acquitted themselves well in the opening half but it was the Glens who took the lead through Steven Gordon with a smart finish. Gordon added to his tally and doubled the Glens advantage mid-way through the half before Dunmurry got themselves on the score sheet to half the deficit. Stevie completed his second hat-trick of the season at this level just before the break to give the Glens a 3-1 half time advantage.
Glentoran made 5 changes at half time and made a flying start to the second half when Eamon McLaughlin found Jonathan Smith on 47 to make it 4-1 before Conall Delaney struck with a fine solo effort for 5-1 on 55 minutes to really kill the game off. The Wee Glens' superior fitness told as the game wore on and young Eoin Rooney making his first u20 appearance hammered home the advantage scoring a 6th from 18 yards before Nathan Best added a 7th. Young striker Rooney rounded off a great debut with his second and Glentoran’s 8th of the night to complete the scoring in a very worthwhile exercise for the Glens
We thank Dunmurry YM for the game and wish them all the best for the remainder of the season
1. Ryan Scutt 2. Craig Baird 3. Jamie Craig 4. Mal Smith 5. William Garrett 6. Eoghan McCawl 7. Nathan Best (1) 8. Eddie Shaw 9. Jonathan Smith (1) 10. Steven Gordon (3) 11. Conall Delaney (1)
Subs: Paul McLaughlin (Scutt 45) Jack Henderson (Shaw 45) Eamon McLaughlin (Gordon 45) Pablo Andrade (Best 45) Sean Wallace (Baird 45) Kai Wardlow (Craig 60) Eoin Rooney 92) (Smith 60)
* Baird and Best returned to the action mid-way through the half for Garret and Delaney respectively
Glenavon U20 1-2 Glentoran U20
Friday 11 November 2017.
Glentoran remain top of the U20 NIFL Premiership Development League this evening, following a 2-1 win over a strong Glenavon side at Mourneview Park.
Glenavon threatened in the early stages with experienced senior players Mark Patton and Andrew McGrory causing problems down both flanks. However it was the Glens who took the lead when Jack Henderson found Padraig Hughes who slipped the ball into Christopher Conn to beat the keeper from 15 yards for 1-0.
Glenavon continued to threaten with their two strikers both going close before Patton forced a fine double save from Paul McLaughlin in the Glens goal. Willie Garrett continued his return from injury with a commanding display in the heart of defence and made a terrific goal line clearance before Jordan Jenkins eventually equalised for Glenavon. Half time Glenavon 1-1 Glentoran
Glentoran started the second half strongly and went close through Jack Henderson whose effort was well gathered by the Glenavon number one before a Darryl McKenna shot warmed the keeper’s hands. The Wee Glens did force a second opening and scored what proved to be the winner when Padraig Hughes peeled off to the back post from a cross and sent the ball back across goal for half time substitute Nathan Best to volley into the net.
From there Glentoran lost James McCarthy and Mark Lowe to injuries which meant reshuffling the team. For a spell, Glenavon capitalised on the uncertainty by pressing Glentoran back and creating more opportunities. The Glens fell into a defensive game in the latter stages but defended fairly solidly and had an inspired Paul McLaughlin in goals to keep Glenavon at bay and cling on to a 2-1 victory. Full time Glenavon 1-2 Glentoran
Team: 1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Craig Baird 3. Kai Wardlow 4. William Garrett 5. James McCarthy 6. Jack Henderson 7. Darryl McKenna 8. Eddie Shaw 9. Padraig Hughes 10. Mark Lowe 11. Christopher Conn (1)
Subs: Nathan Best (1) (Garrett 45) Sean Wallace (McCarthy 60) Jamie Glover (Lowe 70)
Ballymena United U20 3-3 Glentoran U20
Wednesday 8 November 2017.
Glentoran travelled to Ballymena on Wednesday evening seeking to extend their unbeaten run in the league to four games.
It proved to be an entertaining and eventful encounter against a strong Ballymena side fielding our former first team captain Stephen alongside other experienced first team players Matthew Shevlin, Emmett Friars, Conor Brennan and Tony Kane. Willie Garrett continued his comeback after two years out of action.
The Wee Glens flew out of the blocks and into a one goal lead after just 15 seconds when Eddie Shaw found Christopher Conn from kick off. Conn cut inside passed two defenders and squared to Jonathan Smith who finished coolly into the bottom corner.
Glentoran oozed class in the opening exchanges and looked likely to score again as Conn, Smith and Kym Nelson proved a handful but it was Ballymena who scored next when they found Shevlin on the counter attack with a defence splitting pass that he raced onto and slotted beyond Matthew Anderson in the Glentoran goal.
The Glens then lost their rhythm as Ballymena took control with Tony Kane influential during a dominant 20 minute spell where they grabbed their second goal.
The Glens rallied and improved but in truth huffed and puffed until half time. Half time: Ballymena United 2-1 Glentoran.
The second half started in much the same vein as the first with Ballymena on top until the Glens changed shape and pushed Padraig Hughes up front to give a focal point to the attack. That helped the Glens re-establish themselves in the game but Ballymena then grabbed a third on a counter attack after a defensive wobble and the game looked over at 3-1.
Jack Henderson entered the fray and added some much needed composure in the middle of the park and coupled with Eddie Shaw’s growing influence on the game the Glens took control of possession again for the last 20 minutes in which they forced a second goal - this one from the penalty spot from Smith for his second before equalising after a smart turn and finish from Hughes.
The Glens pressed for the final 8 minutes in search of a winner but despite forcing a series of corners and some further creative trickery from Conn the killer breakthrough didn’t arrive and an enthralling encounter finished 3-3. Full time: Ballymena United 3-3 Glentoran.
Team: 1. Matthew Anderson 2. Mal Smith 3. James McCarthy 4. Padraig Hughes (1) 5. William Garrett 6. Mark Lowe 7. Christopher Conn 8. Eddie Shaw 9. Jonathan Smith (2) 10. Darryl McKenna 11. Kym Nelson
Subs: Kai Wardlow (Garrett 45) Nathan Best (McKenna 60) Jack Henderson (M. Smith 67)
Glentoran U20 2-2 Coleraine U20
Saturday 21 October 2017.
Glentoran were held to a 2-2 draw today at the Oval against Coleraine and will be disappointed to not come away with all three points having led twice.
The Wee Glens were dealt a blow before kick off when Paul O’Neill pulled up with a calf strain in the warm up leading to a reshuffle of the pack with Alex Lalor moving to centre forward and Jamie Glover coming in on the left.
The Glens didnt let that put them off however and stormed into an early lead when skipper James McCarthy volleyed home a Mark Lowe corner.
We came agonisingly close to doubling the lead through Lalor and then Kai Wardlow before Sean Wallace was denied by Coleraine’s keeper.
The Glens then sat off and allowed Coleraine to grow into the game and paid the price when they scored a well worked equaliser after half an hour. Full Time: Glentoran 1-1 Coleraine
Nathan Best was introduced at half time for Glentoran and had a big impact down the right as he took on the Coleraine full back at every opportunity. Glentoran turned in a markedly improved second half performance in which we dominated possession and re-established our lead through Mark Lowe with a crisp strike from 20 yards after a good set back by Alex Lalor.
The Glens continued to knock on the door but Coleraine stood firm and grabbed an equaliser 15 minutes from the end when David Kee peeled off at the back post to knock a ball back across goal into a crowded goal mouth where it was turned in for 2-2 Full Time: Glentoran 2-2 Coleraine
Finally a word of congratulation must go to Barry Baggley who at the age of just 15 made his u20 debut today - well done Barry!
Team: 1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Craig Baird 3. Kai Wardlow 4. Padraig Hughes 5. James McCarthy 6. Mark Lowe 7. Sean Wallace 8. Eddie Shaw 9. Alex Lalor 10. Darryl McKenna 11. Jamie Glover
Subs: Nathan Best (Glover 45) Barry Baggley (Lowe 65) Mal Smith (for McKenna 70)
Glentoran U20 6-0 Dungannon Swifts U20
Wednesday 25 October 2017.
left to right: Paul O'Neill, Jonathan Smith, Conall Delaney
Glentoran U20s bounced back from their disappointing Intermediate Cup exit at the weekend with a dominant home display against Dungannon.
The Glens set the tone for the evening by going in front inside ten minutes through a neat finish from Paul O’Neill after Conall Delaney cut in from the right past two defenders to put the ball on a plate for Paul.
Mark Lowe picked out Conall with a fantastic cross field pass and it was the same route that lead to the second when Mark took a quick free kick to pick out Conall again.
Delaney weaved his way inside again before picking out O’Neill for his second.
O’Neill completed his hat-trick inside the half hour marked when he raced onto an Eddie Shaw pass to slam past the keeper from 15 yards.
The Glens created other good chances through Lalor, Smith and Gordon as they continued to dominate proceedings but failed to add to the score line before the break Half time: Glentoran 3-0 Dungannon Swifts
Glentoran kept on the offensive in the second half and didn’t have to wait long for number four as O’Neill added to his tally after more good work from Smith and Delaney
Mid way through the half Delaney got in on the action after an excellent team move Conall drove into the box and finished smartly giving the Dungannon keeper no chance.
A fine solo effort from Jonathan Smith rounded off the evening after he picked the ball up 35 yards from goal and drove past three defenders before firing into the roof of the net for 6-0.
A comprehensive result to match a terrific performance from the 20s. Full time: Glentoran 6-0 Dungannon Swifts
Glentoran U20: 1 Ryan Scutt 2 Tre Sterling 3 Kai Wardlow 4 James Ferrin 5 Mark Lowe 6 Eddie Shaw 7 Steven Gordon 8 Conall Delaney 9 Jonathan Smith 10 Alex Lalor 11 Paul O’Neill
Subs: Craig Baird (Ferrin 45) Darryl McKenna (Gordon 45) James McCarthy (Lalor 65)
Glentoran Scorers: O'Neill (4), Smith, Delaney
Bloomfield 2-1 Glentoran U20 (AET)
Saturday 21 October 2017.
Glentoran crashed out of the Intermediate Cup on Saturday after a 2-1 defeat to Bloomfield at Orangefield Park.
The Glens dominated possession throughout but failed to master the conditions on a sticky pitch and couldn’t find their way past an inspired Bloomfield keeper more than once and paid the ultimate price.
Bloomfield took the lead on 20 minutes when a set piece was delivered into the box and met with a looping header which landed into the far side of Paul McLaughlin’s goal. Despite pressing for the remainder of the first half the Glens couldn’t find a way through, missing several good chances. Half time: 1-0 Bloomfield 1-0 Glentoran.
Glentoran finally made a break through 10 minutes into the second half when a pinpoint cross field pass from Tre Sterling was brought down in the box and squared by Paul O’Neill to Alex Lalor for a comfortable finish. Bloomfield refused to cave in however and their keeper remained equal to anything Glentoran could throw at him and he made a string of fine saves to take the game to extra time. Paul O’Neill had a goal ruled out for a dubious offside just before the 90 and so extra time beckoned. Full time: Bloomfield 1-1 Glentoran U20
In extra time the Glens continued to press to no avail and with five minutes to go came the decisive moment when Padraig Hughes was up ended in the box and the ref pointed to the spot. The usually reliable O’Neill took the responsibility and stepped up, he struck it well but again their keeper made a terrific save. The ball came back out and was cleared over the half way line at which point Bloomfield’s striker raced through and scored from 18 yards for 2-1. Soon after the Glens had another goal disallowed for offside and it was clear it was not going to be our day.
Team: 1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. James McCarthy 4. William Garrett 5. Padraig Hughes 6. Tre Sterling 7. Mark Lowe 8. Eddie Shaw 9. Darryl McKenna10. Alex Lalor 11. Paul O’Neill Subs: Jamie Glover (Garrett) Jack Henderson (Lowe) Sean Duffy (Shaw)
Cliftonville U20 0-3 Glentoran U20
Saturday 14 October 2017.
An excellent performance from start to finish as a very young Glens side ran out comfortable winners over an older, more experienced Reds fielding four over 20s including experienced first team players Chris Ramsey and Ciaran Caldwell.
Goals from Christopher Conn (2) and Alex Lalor.
Glentoran U20: 1. Paul McLaughlin 2. Mal Smith 3. Jamie Glover 4. Padraig Hughes 5. James McCarthy (c) 6. Mark Lowe 7. Alex Lalor 8. Sean Wallace 9. Paul O’Neill 10. Christopher Conn 11. Darryl McKenna
Subs: Craig Baird for Smith, Ben Cushnie for Lalor, Sean Og Gallagher for Lowe