Dergview left to rue lack-lustre first half

Thursday, 1 December 2016

DERGVIEW boss Richard Clarke blamed the "schoolboy errors" that saw his side fall three goals behind to eventually lose 4-3 at home to Lurgan Celtic on Saturday.

Dergview ...3
Lurgan Celtic ...4

After a poor first half, an goal from Ryan Campbell and an own goal got the Darragh Park men back into the game, however Celtic tagged on a fourth to put two between the sides again.

Back though came Dergview, and after Campbell got his second with eight minutes left, they threw everything at Celtic for the remainder to snatch a draw, but despite a couple of close shaves, the visitors would hold out and leave Castlederg with the three league points.

" It's a disappointing result for us," said Clarke. "The couple of weeks break didn't help. We were very slow out of the blocks, we didn't look to be up to the pace. By half-time it was embarrassing.

'We made a few changes and got back into the game, and maybe we could have got something from the game.

"The goals we conceded could have been prevented, they were schoolboy errors. You can't get away with making those mistakes at this level or you'll be punished.

"The performances all over the pitch weren't good. the ball wasn't held up up front, we were overrun in midfield, and we weren't handling them at the back.

"Scoring three goals at home, you should really be winning the game."

Rian Devlin opened the Celtic account after just four minutes. A Kealan Mulcahy gifted the Lurgan side a throw-in, and from there a Josh Barton cross was met by the unmarked Devlin. Just before the twenty minute mark, Lurgan doubled their lead with another headed goal, this time Steven Hutchinson nodding home from a set-piece.

Dergview did venture forward but couldn't create any chances of real worth, with Ivan Sproule forcing Conor McCorry into action. As Clarke brought on Blaine Burns and Richard Lecky, moment later Lurgan scored goal number three when Devlin and Malone testing Mulcahy before Ciaran Ryan finally fired the ball over the line.

Dergview finally started to show a bit of fight after the restart and their new found endeavor was rewarded when a Duwayne McManus was turned in by Celtic defender John Corcoran. Campbell then fired in a second after being teed up by a McManus free.

Celtic responded though, and after Mulcahy had to be at his best to deny Ciaran Ryan, he couldn't stop Jordan Gibson putting two back between the teams. As the game entered it's final ten minutes, Dergview refused to go down easy, and Campbell headed in a Sproule cross to set up a grandstand finish.

By this stage, Clarke's side were going hell for leather, and Campbell and McManus both went clos before Lecky hit the woodwork with an effort, it was too little too late as Dergview were left to rue their lack-lustre first half.

"A positive from the game is that we did have a bit of a fight-back," said Clarke. "Richard Lecky was back after ankle surgery, and he got almost an hour's football. He will need match fitness now but it is good to have him back in our plans.

"We are still looking at a top six spot, and the goals are definitely in us. What we are missing though is consistency. We were so good against Loughall last day out.

"We have to go to Larne who are right in there with us, so it will be like a six pointer. We have to travel there with real appetite."

Clarke will be hoping the return of Regions Cup quintet Colin Robinson, Kealan Mulcahy, Blaine Burns, Richard Lynch and Kyle Friel Curran to training will help pull the squad together ahead of an important series of games before the Christmas split.

"It's good to get the Regions Cup boys, and now with training this week we will get them settled back in.

"It was a good experience for the team. Obviously the team didn't get the results they wanted but on a personal level the boys enjoyed it. It is a bit of prestige for them. For a Championship play it is a top honour to represent your country at the Regions Cup."


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