COLERAINE suffered back-to-back defeats in the Danske Bank Premiership as they were beaten 4-2 by Cliftonville at The Showgrounds…
The Bannsiders would make two changes from the derby defeat to Ballymena United and they should taken the lead inside the opening minute. A flick-on by Matthew Shevlin released Lee Lynch through on goal but he was thwarted by a smart stop by Nathan Gartside.
Cliftonville would punish that miss as they broke the deadlock on six minutes as the ball was swept to Rory Hale at the edge of the box. The midfielder hit a low crisp drive towards the net that left Gareth Deane with no chance.
Two minutes later, things would go from bad to worse for the hosts as they went further behind. A defensive mistake was capitalised by Ronan Hale and yet again he would find a way past Deane.
On 11 minutes, the game was almost over as a contest as a through ball released the run of Ronan Hale, but unlike his brother, his effort failed to hit the target.
Coleraine settled after the storming start by the Reds and missed a glorious opportunity to reduce the arrears as Conor McKendry found Lynch inside the box, but once again, he couldn’t find a way past Gartside who made a smart save.
However, the Bannsiders did get a goal on the stroke of half-time as McKendry cut in from the right-hand side and his shot deflected off the body of Jonny Addis before looping over Gartside and into the net.
Cliftonville would threaten early doors in the second-half as Ronan Hale blazed wide before Rory Hale saw a goal bound effort blocked by Stephen O’Donnell. That pressure would pay off on 62 minutes as the Reds went 3-1 ahead as a corner kick by Jamie McDonagh was headed into the net by Ryan Curran.
The Stripes brought on Evan McLaughlin and James McLaughlin in a bid to get back into the contest and they pulled another goal back on 77 minutes as a terrific delivery by Josh Carson was steered into the net by Shevlin.
Despite setting up a grandstand finish, the north Belfast side would leave with all three points on 89 minutes as a quick counter attack involving Chris Gallagher and Turner allowed the latter to cross for Joe Gormley who headed into the back of the net.
COLERAINE: Deane, Kane, D. Jarvis, Mullan, McKendry (E. McLaughlin ’60 mins), Carson, O’Donnell (J. McLaughlin ’74 mins), Lynch, Glackin, McDermott, Shevlin.
Subs Not Used: Gallagher (GK), A. Jarvis, Farren, O’Mahony.
CLIFTONVILLE: Gartside, Addis, Gallagher, Rory Hale, R. Curran, McDonagh (C. Curran ’84 mins), Lowe, Robinson, Doherty, Turner, Ronan Hale (Gormley ’84 mins).
Subs Not Used: Talley (GK), Storey, Casey, Coates, McGuinness.
Referee: Lee Tavinder