Pulko on target for Magherafelt Sky Blues against Chimney Corner
CHIMNEY CORNER 0
MAGHERAFELT SKY BLUES 1
Magherafelt Sky Blues travelled to Allen Park in Antrim and secured three league points with a well deserved win courtesy of Pulko’s fourth goal in five matches.
The Blues started well and Wilkinson had a shot saved before he put another over the bar in the first 10 minutes. Ex-Blues player Coogan then had a chance for Corner but McNabb saved well.
The Blues took the lead on 18 minutes when Pulko latched onto a great ball from Kane and lashed a shot in off the post. Pulko then had a shot saved and O’Neill shot over before Corner had another chance but Coogan shot wide.
Coogan then had another which McNabb saved. From this point the Blues took control and created numerous chances with Pulko shooting over, McGroggan having a header saved and Wilkinson having two shots saved and another two just narrowly wide.
The second half was a more balanced affair as Corner pushed men forward but the first chance fell to the Blues with Wilkinson shooting wide. McNabb came to the Blues’ rescue with an absolutely outstanding save in the 55th minute to deny Corner.
Shortly after Pulko had a shot saved, Kane then shot over the bar followed by McGroggan had a shot saved on the line. Corner almost made the Blues pay for those missed chances but Monaghan cleared off the line and Long diverted another to safety.
The Blues seized control again and Nicman headed over the top when well placed before the Blues carved open the Corner backline but Kane shot over the bar.
A hard fought three points with McNabb getting the Blues man of the match award.
MSB: McNabb, Stewart (c), C Brady, Monaghan, T Brady, O’Neill, Pulko, Kane, Wilkinson, Murray, McGroggan. Subs: Nicman, Long, McCloskey
The Blues would like to thank JJ Higgins for the sponsorship of a match ball.
This week Magherafelt Sky Blues take on Newtowne at Spires Park in the McReynolds Cup semi final at 2pm.
SKY BLUES U14 3
Magherafelt Sky Blues U14 met undefeated Ballymoney and a hard fought draw was the result of a last gasp equaliser from a delighted Zach Ferson.
This was a really close game between two teams of differing but equally effective styles. Ballymoney used all of their superior physical presence to put the ‘Wee’ Blues under pressure and they were particularly effective from their many well taken set pieces.
In contrast the quality of the Sky Blues football was of a really high standard and their talent, touch and passing created an abundance of goal scoring opportunities which except for the last five minutes the Blues were guilty of squandering.
Ballymoney opened the scoring after ten minutes from a dangerous in-swinging corner but the Blues went straight up the pitch and earned a corner of their own. A great ball from Zach Ferson was gloriously volleyed in at the back post by the ever impressive Ryan McMenemy whose technical ability is as good as anyone in this league.
Despite creating several clear cut chances the Sky Blues just couldn’t make the breakthrough to take the lead, and Ballymoney clinically punished the home team’s wastefulness with two goals before half-time following a couple of poor defensive errors.
The second half saw the Sky Blues dominate possession as the Ballymoney defence dropped deeper and deeper, but yet again the home team’s finishing was just not clinical enough and it looked as if the game would peter out to an unlucky home defeat.
However, against all the odds, the ‘Wee’ Blues showed tremendous fighting spirit and a never say die attitude to produce a barnstorming finish to the game, and they ground out two invaluable goals in the dying minutes to steal a precious point which keeps them right in contention for a real shot at the league title.
Seoirse Lagan scored the first of the comeback goals following some great work from Zach Ferson and the vital equaliser was notched by Zach Ferson after a passage of play that resembled a game of pinball.
Ryan McMenemy, however, brought some much needed calmness to proceedings as he laid the ball into the path of Zach Ferson who crashed the ball into the corner of the net to the delight of the tenacious young Blues. There were twelve great performances and yet again Conleth Mallon and PJ McAleese were exceptional in midfield but man-of-the-match went to Rory Clarke who stepped into the centre of defence to make a succession of interceptions and tackles at the heart of the defence.