Sports Direct Premiership: Matchday 5

Dungannon Swifts 2 - 2 Coleraine
25 Aug 2023 - 19:45Stangmore Park

A dominant Coleraine performance collapsed in second-half stoppage time as the Bannsiders drew 2-2 with Dungannon Swifts at Stangmore Park…

By: Charlie Cooke

Two changes were made to the Bannsiders starting line-up which saw Darren Cole and Jamie Glackin replace Dean Jarvis and Andrew Mitchell who was on the substitutes bench, whereas Dean picked up a knock in our last game against Larne.

With four minutes played, Lyndon Kane started Coleraine’s first attack as he won possession for the Bannsiders at the halfway line as he made a brilliant sliding challenge. The full-back went on to find Lee Lynch who found Glackin on the right wing, Jamie ran into the opposition’s penalty area and he saw his shot across the goalkeeper just go by the post.

Two minutes later, Conor McKendry was fouled on the right just outside the Swifts’ box. The winger took the free kick which was hit low and hard just inches by the post.

With 10 minutes gone, the Bannsiders were awarded a long-range free kick which was taken quickly for the onrushing Andy Scott.  The speedster swung a searching ball into the box which found the head of Aaron Jarvis but his effort was well caught by Niall Morgan.

With 21 minutes played, the Bannsiders were awarded a free kick on the right wing just outside the Swifts’ box as John Scott received a second yellow card as he fouled Glackin for a second time.

Four minutes later, Scott cut in from the left wing and fired a low shot goal wards but unfortunately for Andy, he saw his shot cleared off the line. Soon after, Lynch and Glackin saw their pressing effort bear fruit as they worked together to regain possession in a dangerous attacking position. Lee played the ball through to Jamie but his shot easily held on to by Niall Morgan.

As the clock struck the half hour mark, Scott won the ball from Caolan Marron on the left wing he worked his way into the Swifts’ penalty area but could only see his effort being palmed away by Morgan.

With 33 minutes played, Kane saw his effort from 30 yards out parried by Morgan, Glackin got to ricocheting ball but was unable to find back of the Swifts’ net. Two minutes later, McKendry cut in from the right wing and after some great foot work from the ex-Ipswich man, he saw his rasping shot sting Morgan’s palms who pushed the ball away.

The last action of first-half saw Kane and Glackin combine well on the right wing which saw Lyndon slip the ball to Jamie who ran into the Swifts’ box. The midfielder had the vision to find Lynch who saw a shot saved by the busy Morgan.

After a long stoppage in play after a Dungannon player vomited on the pitch play resumed with a five-minute delay. Just before the hour mark, Scott ran the box and cut the ball back to Graham Kelly who saw his shot rise over the woodwork.

With 65 minutes played, Darren Cole claimed his first goal in a Coleraine shirt as he put the Bannsiders 1-0 up as he met the accurate Glackin corner kick at the front post to nod the ball into the far corner.

With 15 minutes of normal time left, Lee Harkin put the ball on a plate for David McDaid who touched the ball around the Swifts’ keeper, the ball hit the post and across the Dungannon goal line. However, just when it looked like a goal was forthcoming, Morgan was able to get back just in time to stop the ball from going into the net.

Four minutes later, substitute Harkin found himself in space 25 yards out from goal before seeing his curling shot sail just wide of the post.

On 85 minutes, the Bannsiders made it 2-0 from a corner delivered from the right, Andrew Mitchell had his shot blocked but luckily for Coleraine, McDaid showed a poacher’s instinct as his shot rattled the back of the Swifts’ net.

However, Coleraine would see what looked like a certain three points evaporate quickly as Larne loanee Matthew Lusty halved the deficit as he latched onto a low cross from the right wing to finish.

The last kick in the game saw the Swifts equalise as they were awarded a free kick on the edge of their half as every Dungannon outfield player was sent into the Bannsiders half.

The free kick was taken by Niall Morgan and his long ball into the Coleraine penalty area wasn’t dealt with and a flick on landed to Ethan McGee who steered the ball into the net.

A frustrating end to the game saw Coleraine concede two goals that came out of nowhere.

The Bannsiders are at home next Saturday as they face current league leaders Linfield at the Coleraine Showgrounds.

DUNGANNON SWIFTS: Morgan, McGee, J. Scott, Curry, Marron, Dillon (Devine ’79 mins), S. Scott, Glenny (Alves ’79 mins), Gallagher (Moore ’63 mins), Lusty, Whiteside (Owens ’27 mins).

Subs Not Used: Dunne (GK), Harpur, Convie.

COLERAINE: Deane, Kane, Kelly (Farren ’90 mins), A. Jarvis (Mitchell ’63 mins), McKendry (Wallace ’90 mins), McDaid, Lynch, Glackin, Cole, O’Mahony (Harkin ’63 mins), Scott (Doherty ’90 mins)

Subs Not Used: Gallagher (GK), McCrudden.

Referee: Ian McNabb