United entertained Ballywalter Recreation in this league encounter at Millbridge last Saturday.
The visitors are struggling at the wrong end of the league table and were keen to take all three points from their hosts and their intentions were obvious from the kick off as they dominated possession. A stout defensive display from Adam Herron, Scott Brashaw, Davy Boal and Ethan Majury held them at bay with Bryan McMullan’s safe handling copper fastening their overall play. As the game progressed United became more of an attacking force with Aaron Cheevers causing problems with his surging runs aided and abetted by his forward partner Gareth McMullan who was holding the ball up well.
In midfield Dalton Tate, Stuart McMullan, David Kelly and Greg Allison defended and attacked in equal measure.
United took the led from the penalty spot after 35 minutes following foul on Gareth McMullan. A brilliant through ball out of central midfield sent Cheever free and as he surged into the penalty area he cut the ball back to Gareth McMullan who was pushed over as he went to shoot. Cheevers stepped up and slotted the spot kick confidently into the net.
Just before half time United lost experienced defender Adam Herron with a nasty injury which following attendance by the Ambulance Service and a visit to the hospital has been diagnosed as a fracture.
In the second half both teams attacked without creating any clear opportunities however in the closing quarter things changed significantly with both goalkeepers making excellent saves. Aaron McCaffrey went close on a number of occasions as United make every effort to secure the three points.
Manager Keith Hamilton introduced Ian McMullan to the game for the last quarter and his fresh legs created lots of problems for the visitors defence and in the 80th minute when he was released free on goal the Ballywalter keeper brought him down well outside the area and he received a red card. Minutes later Ian McMullan scored United’s second when his goal bound shot was deflected past the stand in keeper to make it 2 – 0. Craig McMullan made his comeback after being unavailable for a number of weeks and he combined with brother Stuart to make numerous forays down the left wing in the closing stages.
This was not one of United’s best displays however each and every player played their part in securing the win. The unfortunate injury to Adam Herron marred the success of the day and everyone at the club wishes him a speedy recovery. Adam is a very popular player senior player who has turned in numerous top class committed performances over the years and his team mates and the club’s supporters are looking forward to seeing him back in action very soon.