Match Report 17/04/18 – Donegal Celtic 2 v Lisburn Distillery 1
17th April 2018
Donegal Celtic 2 v Lisburn Distillery 1
Lisburn Distillery fell to a disappointing 2-1 defeat to league strugglers Donegal Celtic on Tuesday night in the last match before the split. A first half penalty from Ciaran Murray and a Padraig Hughes strike in the second was enough to seal the points, with Matthew Ferguson clinching a consolation goal just before the referee blew the whistle for full time.
Donegal Celtic started the match on the front foot and gave the away side a scare after just 2 minutes when Robert McVarknock managed to get beyond Barry Moore in the box, but keeper Pat Saunders was alert to the danger and gathered the ball ahead of the Celtic attacker.
The Whites were having plenty of possession but were struggling to really carve out any real opportunities, with Matthew Ferguson’s 6th minute shot after good build up play from Nick Beta going high and wide.
Ferguson did however force a save from Celtic keeper Ryan Scutt with 24 minutes on the clock. The Distillery forward collected the ball from a throw in before rifling an effort towards the bottom right corner of the goal that the keeper could only parry, but the ball just didn’t fall to a white shirt and the Celtic defence was able to clear.
Ferguson came close again just minutes later when he rose the highest to meet an Aaron Harris freekick but his header went just wide of the left-hand post.
Despite Distillery having more of the ball, the home side looked very threatening going forward and they got some reward for their marauding runs on the 28th minute when Adam Wright brought down Ciaran Murray on the edge of the box and the referee pointed to the spot and gave Wright a yellow card. Murray took the penalty himself and slotted it into the bottom left hand corner of the goal just beyond the reach of the diving Saunders to give the home side a valuable lead.
Distillery tried to get back into the game straight away, and Paul Young was next to take aim from outside the box but his effort went wide of the left post. The half time whistle went soon after with the score at 1-0.
Distillery started the second half with far more attacking intent and they had a chance to test the keeper on 48 minutes when Ferguson was brought down just outside the box for a free kick. Timmy Clarke stepped up but unfortunately saw his effort come back off the wall and cleared.
On 50 minutes Distillery had their best chance of the evening when a deep Alan McMurtry cross to Mikey Withers was headed down for Ferguson to hit on the half volley from 12 yards out but his effort whistled just over the bar.
The Lisburn Distillery management team made a couple of changes on the 63rd minute with Stephen Hislop and Gary Workman coming on for Paul Young and Jonny McCaw.
Despite being under pressure for much of the second half, it was Donegal Celtic who next had a good chance to extend their lead when Peter McDermott ran through and shot from outside the box but his drilled effort was smartly saved by Saunders low to his left.
Another change for Distillery on the 69th minute saw Mikey Withers making way for Conor Corry, but just minutes later the home side doubled their lead when a slight mix up at the back allowed McVarknock to find Padraig Hughes who had the simple task of finding the net from about 2 yards out.
Distillery did manage to get a late consolation goal in injury time when Ferguson managed to drift clear of the Celtic defence and slot the ball beyond Scutt but it was too late in the day to start a comeback and the referee blew the whistle for full time just after the restart.
It was a disappointing display from Distillery who hand won five out of the previous six matches, but all attention will now be focused on a massive game at New Grosvenor on Saturday when the Whites face league leaders Dundela.
Match report by Lydia Campbell
LIsburn Distillery line up: Saunders, McMurtry, Clarke, A.Wright, Moore, Harris, McCaw, Young, Withers, Beta, Ferguson
Subs: Toolan, Corry (for Withers) Reid, Hislop (for McCaw) Workman (for Young)
David Hunter’s Full Picture gallery from the game can be found @ https://flic.kr/s/aHsmef5Uhb