Sports

Limavady lose out to Loughgall

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Loughgall...........2 Limavady United..............1

THE Championship is truly a brutal league. As Limavady United's players were slumping to another defeat in an ill-tempered encounter in the unseasonable cold and rain on Saturday, it was obvious to their doughty band of supporters - if unfortunately less obvious to some of the team - that what is needed to succeed in this league is the ability to gouge and push, trip and scrap for every ball, and forget any thought of playing football.
That is not to say that Loughgall are worse than most of the sides in the division, but they are experienced in doing what is needed to stay in the division. United, patently, still need to learn the lesson.
United started with a 3-5-2 formation but suffered a late withdrawal by Jennings who was replaced by Bradley.
The pattern for the game was set in the third minute when Watt inexplicably gave the ball away in front of his goal but he was a relieved man that Douglas fired wide when he had time to pick his spot.
At the other end, Devlin put Bradley through but his effort was deflected wide. Owens and Bradley then combined well to release the player-manager whose low effort slithered just past Buchanan's far post.
However this bright start was forgotten after 12 minutes as Taylor flighted a free kick into the box from beside the right corner flag and McConnell was left unmarked to make a free run across the box and head in from the near post. It was a totally preventable goal.
Some six minutes later, McConnell could have scored again as United once again gave away the ball in a dangerous position and the winger ran at Crown and then shot narrowly wide. Douglas also was unmarked when he put in a weak headed effort.
United seemed ill at ease and time and again, a long ball across the pitch was opening them up. Unforced errors made things worse.
McKeever was attacking down the flank when he gave the ball away and a three man break down the pitch ended in Taylor shooting wide. McConnell nearly connected with another cross-field pass in the 35th minute.

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