Battling performance from young Blues

Glentoran U13s 2

Glenavon U13s 1

Glenavon Under-13s’ difficult start to the season continued when they travelled to Mallusk to face Glentoran, the Northern Ireland cup holders and recent Foyle Cup winners.

Despite the narrow defeat the Lurgan Blues came away from the game knowing that if they put in the same level of performance and commitment every week then it won’t be long before they are climbing the National League table.

Glenavon had the better of the first half and were perhaps unfortunate not to be leading by more than one goal at the interval. Conor Weir almost got on the end of a Ruairi McDonald corner in the opening minutes, before Matty Swann tested the Glentoran keeper with a long range effort.

The opening goal arrived after 18 minutes when Conor Weir appeared to have been taken down on the left edge of the penalty area, but before the referee could make a decision the ball dropped to Ruairi McDonald who unleashed a terrific shot which nestled in the top corner.

It could have been even better for Glenavon when Matty Swann again tried his luck from long range but, after spilling the first shot, the keeper denied Callum Ferris from the rebound.

It was no surprise a team with Glentoran’s record came on strong after the break and within six minutes of the restart the Lurgan Blues failed to deal with a corner which was converted for the equaliser from close range.

Glenavon were put under pressure from a series of corners, with Ryan Ferris making a great headed goal line clearance.

With 11 minutes remaining Glenavon were undone from another set-piece, the ball being scrambled home following a corner.

To their credit the Lurgan Blues didn’t lie down and accept their fate and Callum Ferris tested the keeper with a header.

But despite pressing in the closing stages Glenavon couldn’t manage the equaliser that they will feel their performance merited.

Glenavon: Adam McAlpine, Ryan Ferris, Conor Molloy, Jack Dillon, Jacob Collins, Ryan Irvine, James Mahaffy, Conor Weir, Ruairi McDonald, Matty Swann, Callum Ferris, Adam Clarke.