Sports Direct Premiership: Matchday 31

Coleraine 0 - 0 Larne
09 Mar 2024 - 15:00The Showgrounds

COLERAINE and Larne shared the points in an entertaining 0-0 draw at The Showgrounds..

By: Charlie Cooke

Boss Oran Kearney made one change to the starting eleven which saw captain Stephen O’Donnell replace the injured Kieran Farren in the heart of the defence.

On a cold afternoon on the Ballycastle Road, Larne had their first shot on goal with 12 minutes on the clock as Tomas Cosgrove met Levi Ives’ cross but his header drifted wide of the target.

With 26 minutes played, Jamie Glackin lifted the ball from the by-line inside the penalty area in search of Matthew Shevlin’s head but unfortunately, Larne stopper Rohan Ferguson was alert to catch the ball before Shevlin could make contact.

The Stripes would have Rory Brown to thank three minutes later as the ball was worked into Andy Ryan inside the box but the striker’s strike was palmed away by the Coleraine ‘keeper.

Soon after, the first substitution of the match was made which saw a swap in the middle as the fourth official Declan Hassan replaced Jamie Robinson in the middle due to a knock sustained earlier in the contest.

The last meaningful action of the half saw the Bannsiders threaten as Shevlin released Glackin into the box but the midfielder was denied by the outstretched legs of Scottish native Ferguson.

The Inver Reds would spurn a glorious chance to take the lead just two minutes after the restart as the ball was worked to Ives inside the box but the ex-Cliftonville ace misfired from an inviting position.

Just before the hour mark, neat football by Jamie McGonigle and Glackin released Shevlin but the striker failed to keep his curling effort below the crossbar.

On 67 minutes, a counter attack started by Conor McKendry picked out Glackin who found McGonigle with a cut back, but his shot arrowed over the woodwork.

As we entered the last 20 minutes of the match, McKendry made a lung busting run but his long range shot went wide in front of a packed Railway End.

With 77 minutes played, McKendry’s free kick met the head of ex-Larne man Graham Kelly but his header was straight at Ferguson.

The Bannsiders thought they had won the contest at the death as a glorious pass by Glackin found Shevlin but his strike went inches the wrong side of the post as the game finished scoreless.

COLERAINE: Brown, Kane, D. Jarvis, Kelly, McKendry, Lowry, Shevlin, O’Donnell, Glackin, J. Scott, McGonigle (A. Scott ‘87 mins).

Subs Not Used: Gallagher (GK), McDaid, Lynch, Cole, Devine, Gaston.

LARNE: Ferguson, Donnelly, Bonis (O’Neill ‘80 mins), Ives, Bolger, Millar (Graham ‘80 mins), Cosgrove, Sloan (Orozco ‘60 mins), Gallagher, Ryan, Williams.

Subs Not Used: McAdams (GK), Kearns, Randall, Westendorf.

Referee: Jamie Robinson