Cairns’ side suffer first home defeat since his Glebe return

NICE 'N KNEESY. Rangers player Nicholl gets the ball under control despite the close attention of his Annagh opponent on Saturday.INBM10-14 034SC.
NICE 'N KNEESY. Rangers player Nicholl gets the ball under control despite the close attention of his Annagh opponent on Saturday.INBM10-14 034SC.

Annagh United were the visitors to the Riada Stadium on Saturday as Glebe attempted to move into the top half of the table for the first time this season.

With Brian Kane absent through injury Glebe turned to young Lewis McIlveen between the sticks and again the youngster stepped up to the plate with a competent display.

However it was not enough to earn the hosts any reward as an impressive Annagh took all three points with an accomplished performance which eventually saw them triumph by three goals to nil.

It was Glebe’s first home defeat since manager Peter Cairns’ return to Rangers.

The visitors were first to threaten when, in the third minute, Philip Craig found Scott McCordick but the striker’s effort sailed over.

Glebe’s first attack of note arrived a couple of minutes later when Ian Christie’s inviting cross failed to find a recipient.

Indeed this was a source of frustration for the hosts throughout the half as they were unable to take advantage of a number of dangerous balls into the box.

Annagh showed how it should be done shortly afterwards when a corner from Gardiner was flicked on at the near post and McCordick was on hand to nod home with McIlveen helpless.

The visitors almost made it two when McCann’s shot hit the post before a Marks corner caused panic in the away defence.

In the ensuing scramble the ball fell to Henry but his side-footed effort was comfortably stopped by Wright.

Peter Spratt then produced a lovely piece of individual skill to find Henry breaking on the right but the striker’s cross-shot again failed to find any takers. Henry was then involved when he latched on to a through ball in the 31st minute but his run was brought to a halt by Riddle who received a yellow card for his challenge and Glebe failed to take advantage of the ensuing free-kick.

As the half drew to a close another Marks set-piece, this time a free-kick from the left, evaded everyone before flashing just past the post and the interval was reached with United still one goal to the good.

With conditions now in their favour Annagh started the second period in determined fashion with McCordick to the fore in a number of forays into Glebe territory.

McIlveen denied him twice and the striker then almost turned provider when he found McCann but the wide man’s effort struck a post.

The pressure was rewarded with an exceptional strike from Jamie Gardiner as he controlled Stretton’s cross before turning his marker and finding the corner of the net with from 12 yards out.

With the wind firmly in their sails Annagh sought to seal the points but first Hume, and then Jackie Morrison, cleared off the line as Glebe bravely resisted.

Morrison was also proving a valuable outlet with his energetic bursts from full-back and the introduction of Adam McVicker saw the threat increase from that flank, most notably when Shepherd’s volley from McVicker’s cross forced Wright into action.

Despite these efforts it was United who should have increased their lead but Craig fired well over when found by a great cross from full-back Grant.

The experienced Shea Campbell was introduced as the game entered the closing stages and his first touch was a shot which drew a save from McIlveen.

His next meaningful contribution saw him break down the right before cutting in and finding the net with a composed finish to end the game as a contest and ensure the points were heading to County Armagh.

Glebe Rangers: McIlveen, Morrison (J), Hume, Sheppard, Dobbin, Spratt, Marks, Kennoway, Nicholl, Christie, Henry.

Subs: Morrison (W), McVicker, Gurney

Annagh United: Wright, Grant, Riddle, Allen, Paget, Pentland, McCann, Craig, McCordick, Gardiner, Stretton.

Subs: Campbell, Skelton, Murphy, Nesbitt, Brown.

* Glebe Rangers FC lotto numbers 5, 8, 18. No winners. Next week’s jackpot £750.

* Ballymoney are at home in the quarter-final of the Coca-Cola Intermediate Cup this weekend against Bangor (1.30pm) and Glebe are scheduled to play Lurgan Celtic.