Sky Blues Reserves produce five star performance at Ballymoney

Ballymoney United reserves 0

Magherafelt Sky Blues Res 5

MAGHERAFELT Sky Blues Reserves travelled to Ballymoney aiming to make it back to back league wins and they did not disappoint on what was to be an excellent day at the office.

Manager Declan was in two minds whether to stick with the 3-5-2 system that brought the Reserves their first league win of the season two weeks ago or switch back to the traditional 4-4-2.

He decided to go with the 3-5-2 system and got his reward when a well organised team led by captain Bell produced their best performance this season to date.

The game started with the Blues well on top with Vitali, Conor Bradley and Niblock taking control of the midfield.

In the opening stages the Blues were starting to create chances and they got off the mark when an attack in the box fell to Vitali who on the turn reacted first to place the ball into the net. This gave the Blues full confidence as this Ballymoney side who were 100% in the league coming into this game were disrupted.

With the Blues comfortable in play they were determined to add a second goal and with some good football down the flank a cross fell to the head of the returning Doole who headed it back to Vitali who was first to the ball to score his 2nd of the day and 2nd goal of the season.

Sky Blues Res 2-0 Ballymoney United Res. Ballymoney stepped up their urgency in attack and had chances of their own to score only for the young Blues keeper Gribben who made two great saves to do his confidence the world of good! Manager Declan had a good chat with the keeper before kick off and this settled Gribben nicely for the game! Ballymoney were coming into the game more with midfield starting to get a grip on the play which led to the Blues to sharpen up.

Conor Bradley found himself in the book a yellow card offence which everyone was puzzled about. The Referee was very harsh on the Blues with 60/40 of the decisions going Ballymoney’s way.

However this did not stop the Blues as mid-way through the first half Conor Bradley received the ball lined up his shot and scored with a fantastic curler which flew in off the post producing a huge cheer from the players, manager and subs on the line.

At this rate the Blues didn’t want half time to come and should have had a penalty when Niblock made a sharp run into the penalty box and was taken down to which the Referee showed no interest.

The second half started with Ballymoney naturally adding quick tempo to their play in an attempt to get back into the game.

However the blues were in control with Bell, De Barros and O’Kane commanding the back line. The blues were hungry to score more goals and added their fourth when from a cross Ballymoney’s keeper could only punch the ball to Conor Bradley who connected on the volley outside the box to fire into the corner of the net for his second goal of the day and second goal of the season.

The Blues were enjoying their football and scored their fifth when the impressive Aaron Bradley showed hard work pays off as he pressured the Ballymoney defence into playing a loose pass into midfield which Doole intercepted to run through and place his shot into the net for his first goal of the season.

The Blues Manager made changes with the experienced Trainor coming on for De Barros in defence who had an good game upon his return to the Reserves and John McGuckin coming on for the hard working Murphy.

The change of shape seen Aaron Bradley move to right wing with John McGuckin partnering Doole up front. The Blues continued to create chances and had some good link up play between Aaron Bradley, John McGuckin and Doole it could have easily been six. Madden came on for Conor Bradley to add freshness to the midfield who after a hard shift were starting to tire.

Ballymoney did grab a consolation goal when the Blues switched off late on in the penalty box leading to Ballymoney taking full advantage and scoring. Not long after the restart the referee blew the full time whistle to the delight of all the Blues players and the Manager! An excellent performance from the Magherafelt side.

All players can take credit on what was a very organised win but man of the match on the day was Danny McCormack who worked hard all afternoon on the left wing and showed great discipline in his role given by the Manager! The Blues Res next league game sees them make the short trip to table toppers Tobermore United Res in a local derby.

Team: Gribben, Bell, De Barros, O’Kane, Murphy, Conor Bradley, Niblock, Vitali, McCormack, Doole, Aaron Bradley. Subs: Trainor, John McGuckin, Aodhan McGuckin, Madden, Dowdell.

Training News

All players are requested to check the Blues website for the latest training details.

To keep up to date with all team information please visit

Anyone interested in joining the club will be most welcome.

Under 13 Training – Tuesday 2nd October

Location: Meadowbank Indoor Arena Time :7pm-8pm Cost :£3

Remember: All membership and sponsorship cards to be paid this week.

Under 14 Training

Training continues this week indoor at Meadowbank 7 - 8pm. Trainers and shinpads Cost £3

The few remaining people who still owe the £10 membership fee must bring it to training this week.


First Team –Craig Memorial Cup – Quarter Final - Magherafelt Sky Blues v Tobermore United – Saturday 5th October 1.30pm ko Spires Park

Reserves – League – Tobermore United Reserves v Magherafelt Sky Blues Reserves – Saturday 5th October 2pm ko

Under 15 – League – Portadown Youth v Magherafelt Sky Blues – Saturday 5th October 11am ko

Under 14 – League – Portadown Youth v Magherafelt Sky Blues–Saturday 5th October 11am ko

Under 13– League –Magherafelt Sky Blues v Coleraine Academy –Saturday 5th October 11am ko

Under 12 – League –Magherafelt Sky Blues v Coleraine Academy - Saturday 5th October 11am ko


First Team –League - Magherafelt Sky Blues 0, Dunloy FC 3

Reserves – League – Ballymoney United Reserves 1, Magherafelt Sky Blues Reserves 5

Under 15 – League –Magherafelt Sky Blues 3, Limavady Youths 3

Under 14 – League –Magherafelt Sky Blues 0, Crusaders 4

Under 13– League –Magherafelt Sky Blues 6, Cookstown Youth 2


The Magherafelt Sky Blues Ground Development Lotto will continue next weekend. No one matched the correct numbers last week.

The £25 lucky dip winner for last week was Liam Mallon. Tickets are on sale for next Saturday’s draw from all committee members.

The jackpot is now £775.

Dismal Blues crash to Dunloy

MAGHERAFELT Blues entertained Dunloy and lost 3-0 to a Dunloy side who were far superior on the day and fully deserved their win.

Shortly after kick off Dunloy took control of the match and forced the Blues onto the back foot and this trend was to continue throughout the match.

Dunloy took a deserved lead when Farniok missed his attempted clearance from Quinn’s back pass and the Dunloy striker pounced to slot the ball home.

The Blues continued to struggle and after Dunloy had missed a couple of good opportunities fell further behind when Dunloy once again opened up the Blues defence to score their 2nd.

The 2nd half continued in much the same vein as the 1st with Dunloy being the dominant team and halfway through the half they scored their 3rd.

The final whistle arrived with the Blues relieved to have only lost by 3.

This was a poor performance from the Blues with only Steven O’Neill and Oran Sexton emerging with any credit.

TEAM; Farniok, D O’Neil, Scullion, Quinn, S O’Neill, McGuckin, Stewart, Devlin, Beattie, Collins, Subs; Sexton, P O’Neill, Ludlow