CONOR McMenamin’s late header would deny Coleraine a share of the spoils as they narrowly lost at Solitude last month…
Saturday, December 21, 2019
Cliftonville 1-0 Coleraine
Goal – McMenamin (’83 mins)
COLERAINE slipped to fourth in the Danske Bank Premiership after yesterday’s 1-0 defeat against Cliftonville at Solitude…
The Bannsiders enjoyed a number of chances as Jamie Glackin, Ben Doherty and Stephen O’Donnell went close, but in the end, Conor McMenamin’s header seven minutes from time sealed the three points for Paddy McLaughlin’s side.
Coleraine started the better of the sides and were unlucky not to forge ahead in the opening minutes as Jamie Glackin fired over from six yards out. The Reds regrouped and went on the attack, calling Chris Johns into action at the other end to deny Conor McMenamin.
Eoin Bradley and Gareth McConaghie had further chances from set-pieces in the opening exchanges but it was Ben Doherty who looked to have found the net on 19 minutes. The midfielder linked up well with Jamie Glackin before driving towards goal and pulling the trigger. Doherty’s effort had Brush at full stretch in the Cliftonville goal but the strike went narrowly wide.
Doherty was in the thick of the action midway through the first half as he tried his luck from distance forcing Brush to tip over. Joe Gormley had the pick of Cliftonville’s chances in the first half but he failed to hit the target on 40 minutes after some great link-up play with strike partner Ryan Curran.
At half-time the scores were deadlocked, however, Coleraine shaded the chances in the opening 45 minutes. Oran Kearney was forced to make a change at the break as Adam Mullan limped off to be replaced by Stephen O’Donnell.
Cliftonville were forced into a change of their own shortly after as Ruaidhri Donnelly was stretchered off following a coming together with Aaron Traynor. The first meaningful chance of the second half fell to the Bannsiders on 63 minutes as James McLaughlin had a header saved from Doherty’s free-kick into the area. Ian Parkhill went close with cross-come-shot moments later but the scores remained level as the effort failed to find the target.
Joe Gormley was gifted an opportunity on 70 minutes as he capitalised on a weak defensive header but was unable to lift the ball over the advancing Chris Johns. Moments later, Josh Carson looked to have broken the deadlock for Coleraine three minutes later but he was denied by an exceptional save from Richard Brush.
There was to be controversy moments later as Cliftonville appealed for a penalty as they felt Gary Breen’s shot at goal hit the arm of Aaron Traynor but referee Tim Marshall waved away the appeal.
Cliftonville grabbed the lead on 83 minutes via Conor McMenamin who got on the end of a cross to the back post and the midfielder made no mistake glancing home with a neat header which came off the underside of the crossbar and into the net.
In the end, Coleraine were left to rue a number of missed chances over the course of the ninety minutes and will be hopeful that home comforts can allow them to get back to winning ways against Ballymena United on Boxing Day.
CLIFTONVILLE: Brush, McDermott, Breen, Harney, C. Curran, R. Curran, R. Donnelly (Maguire ‘55 mins) (Foster ‘90 mins), Doherty, Gormely, McMenamin, A. Donnelly.
Subs not used: Dunne (GK), Wilson, Rocks, McCurry, Gorman.
COLERAINE: Johns, Kane, Mullan (O’Donnell ’46 mins), Doherty, McLaughlin (Lowry ‘71 mins), Bradley, Carson, McConaghie, Parkhill (Gawne ‘78 mins), Glackin, Traynor.
Subs not used: Gallagher (GK), Douglas, McGuckin, Maciulaitis.