Celtic hit for five at home

Colin Malone. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Colin Malone. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Lurgan Celtic’s opening home game of the NIFL Championship campaign featured a first defeat as PSNI left town with a 5-2 success.

Both sides entered the break on level terms following a blank first-half performance.

Ciaran Ryan came close with a testing header pushed over the crossbar before he failed to make the most of an opportunity from inside the penalty area.

PSNI grabbed the game’s first goal inside the opening moments of the second half and doubled the tally soon after off a corner-kick.

Dale Malone’s free-kick attempt bounced around the box and a Raymond Fitzpatrick snapshot deflected out for a corner-kick.

Hopes of a fightback suffered a setback past the hour mark with a third PSNI goal and number four arrived to increase Celtic’s suffering.

Richie Thompson attacked along the left but his pass back into the danger area was missed by both Fitzpatrick and Malone.

A final flurry of goals provided Stephen Hutchinson with a successful header to cut the gap before substitute James Wright left it at 4-2.

PSNI made it 5-2 across injury-time to cap an afternoon to forget for Colin Malone’s Celtic men.

Celtic visit Larne on Saturday in the league before a midweek trip next Tuesday to take on Knockbreda across the League Cup, with kick-offs 3 o’clock and 6.30.

LURGAN CELTIC: Conor McCorry, Shane McCabe, Conor McAnallen, Stephen Hutchinson, John Cochrane, Jordan Gibson, Joshua Barton, Ciaran Ryan, Richie Thompson, Dale Malone, Raymond Fitzpatrick. Subs: James Wright (McCabe, 68), Caolin Thompson (Barton, 68), Aaron Rogers.

PSNI: Jordan Williamson, Mark McCullagh, Adam Wright, Andrew Blackledge, Scott McCrory, Ashton McDermott, James Wright, Ryan Berry, Lukasz Adamczyk, Stuart Hutchinson, Paul McDowell. Subs: Scott Nixon, Darius Roohi, Kyle Agnew.