Football: Mullan’s late equaliser for Magherafelt Sky Blues

Magherafelt Sky Blues U12 players Zach Ferson, Caolan Crozier, Jamie Gribben and Oisin Mullan
Magherafelt Sky Blues U12 players Zach Ferson, Caolan Crozier, Jamie Gribben and Oisin Mullan

For the second week running Magherafelt Sky Blues Under 12s played league leaders Loughgall Youth, and once again nothing could separate the two teams.

The Sky Blues made a bright start to the game and they looked as if they were set to gain the upper hand, but as the half wore on Loughgall used their superior physical strength to push the Blues back.

Loughgall opened the scoring from a free kick, the ball was played into a crowded goalmouth and a Loughgall player headed over Shea McGuckin who could only get fingertips to the ball as it crept over the line.

The Sky Blues struggled for the remainder of the half and they were glad to hear the half-time whistle.

The Blues were on the attack right from the start of the second half and won a free kick just inside the Loughgall half.

Rory Clarke took the free kick and sent a great ball into the box, the ball glanced off a Loughgall head and Jarlath McWilliams stole in at the back post to head the ball over the despairing Loughgall keeper.

With Loughgall gaining the upper hand once more their midfielder won a ball in the centre of the pitch, he played the ball through the centre of the Sky Blues defence where their pacy striker lofted the ball over the on-rushing Shea McGuckin to score.

Minutes later the home team won a free kick just outside the box, up stepped man-of-the-match Rory Clarke to place a great shot high into the roof of the net.

With Loughgall still in the ascendency they pushed the Sky Blues back and won a dubious throw in on the right hand side.

To rub salt in the wounds Loughgall won the ball from the resultant throw and worked the ball wide, the ball was then played into the box and with Shea McGuckin rushing out to claim the ball it bounced over his head giving a Loughgall striker the easiest of finishes and they took the lead for the third time.

Ryan Lennox won the ball on the left hand side and he launched a speculative ball into the Loughgall box, it looked as if the Loughgall keeper was favourite to collect it but Oisin Mullan had other ideas.

He bravely challenged the keeper and as the ball broke was on to it like a flash, gleefully forcing the ball over the line, breaking Loughgall hearts.