Controversial extra-time goal leads to cup exit

Ritchie Thompson - on target for Dollingstown.
Ritchie Thompson - on target for Dollingstown.
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Dollingstown hosted Armagh City in a repeat of last years final and once again Armagh ran out 2-1 victors.

However, it took a controversial late goal to determine the tie after a pulsating game that had tenacious challenges, high levels of work rate by both teams.

Armagh started much more brightly and closed down every loose ball but despite the better possession they failed to make the breakthrough until on 36 minutes when Philip Donnelly volleyed home from the edge of the area after a poor headed clearance by captain Aaron Moffett.

The half time talk by manager Gary Duke seamed to have a positive effect as Dollingstown started to compete much better although it wasn’t until after the hour mark when the three substitutes of debutants Fegan, Kerr and Donaghy turned the game in favour of the home team.

Ritchie Thompson pulled Dollingstown level on 66 minutes when after a fine run he rounded the keeper to fire low into the bottom corner.

Richard Donaghy was now causing havoc on the right side for Armagh as Dollingstown went in search of the winner and this almost happened on 80 minutes when from his weaving run and cross Michael Fegan headed into the keepers arms.

The game then went into extra time with some very feisty challenges by both teams and it was Armagh who scored the vital goal three minutes into this period of extra time.

The ball came across from the left side of the pitch and seemed to drift at least two feet over the bye line. Armagh striker Stephen Murray retrieved the ball and pulled it back for substitute Gary Boyle to volley home from an almost identical position to the opening goal.

Despite Dollingstown’s protests the goal stood but credit to both teams as they continued to compete for every ball in the final minutes.

On Saturday Dollingstown return to league action with yet another home fixture against ex Glenavon manager Packie McAllister’s Sporting Leisure at Planters Park.

DFC would like to thanks Saturday’s match sponsor TBF Thompson from Portadown and also Donegan Freight from Enniskillen who sponsored the match ball.