NAFL Div 1B new boys Aquinas visited The Millbridge for the last of our midweek start of season fixtures. The visitors were fresh off the back of an 8-0 victory vs fellow 1B side Dundonald in the Steel & Son’s Cup.
At The Millbridge, the sun shone down during the warm ups and the rain that caused havoc earlier in the day didn’t appear too much throughout the duration of the game.
Continue reading Match Report: BUFC 1 – 6 Aquinas FC
Ballynahinch United welcomed Portaferry Rovers to The Millbridge for the opening game of the Northern Amateur Football League Division 1B season.
Rain sprinkled over the freshly cut grass as teams prepared for kick-off. But it didn’t put off the spectators as fans from both sides lined the perimeter of the pitch, eagerly anticipating the start of the new season.
Continue reading Match Report: Ballynahinch United 1 – 1 Portaferry Rovers
We now know our opponents in the early rounds of the cup draws for:
- Toals Steel & Sons Cup,
- Border Regt. Cup and
- The Tennent’s Irish Cup.
Steel & Sons Cup Draws
We will play Crewe United on Saturday 10 August at 2.30pm in the Toals Steel & Sons Cup, First Round. The tie will be played at Crewe Park.
On 2 July, the Second Round ties were also announced. The winners of our fixture against Crewe United will visit East Belfast FC or Bangor FC on 24 August at 2.30pm.
We’ve made it to the Second Round for six years in a row. Last season, we were knocked out of the Steel & Sons Cup in Round 2 when we lost 4-0 to St James’ Swifts at The Millbridge. While in 2013, we made it to Round 3 and lost to a strong Ballyclare Comrades side.
Border Regiment Cup
In the Border Regt Cup, we will play against NAFL Div 1B new boys, Aquinas FC.
We will play Aquinas FC on Saturday 31 August at Rathmore School and the match will kick off at 2pm.
In previous years, we have made it to the third round of the Border Cup, however in 1989/90, we won the winning the Amateur League’s Border Regiment Cup when the team beat British Telecom on penalties after a 2-2 draw.
Tennent’s Irish Cup
Meanwhile, in the Tennent’s Irish Cup draw on 8 July, we were drawn another away tie – this time to Strabane FC on 17 August. Our kick off for Irish Cup games is at 1.30pm.
Our best run in the Irish Cup came in 2013 when we got to the 5th Round. On 9 January we traveled to the North Coast to face NIFL Premiership side, Coleraine FC. The score was 0-0 at half time, but finished 8-0 to the favourites. The aim will be to get to that stage again and further in the other Northern Ireland cup competitions.
We will keep you up to date on the next round of cup draws.
United entertained Barn United from Carrickfergus at Millbridge on Saturday last in a league game. The visitors, although bottom of Division 1B have been on the up in recent weeks so United’s manager Glynn Robinson was taking nothing for granted and any concerns he had were soon confirmed. The visitors came out the strongest and it would be fair to say that they were the dominant team and thoroughly deserved their interval 1-0 lead. They had scored from the penalty spot on the half hour mark when Alastair Coburn had brought down a forward as he weaved his way through the penalty area. United’s goal scoring opportunities were minimal except for a Daniel Rice effort that was well saved with Gavin Crawford putting the rebound wide.
A completely different United team came out for the second half as they chased an equaliser with Barn proving to be dangerous on the break. Lee Martin on his return from injury was introduced and manager Glynn Robinson took the gamble of bringing on a semi fit Gary Murray into the centre of defence with Scot Brashaw moving into central midfield to work alongside Gavin Crawford, Jack Davis, Ben Wilson and Alex Burtney.
That proved to be a masterstroke as United became even more dominant and in the 70th minute a touch of brilliance from Lee Martin brought the equaliser. The chance came when Brashaw blocked a pass on the half way line and surged toward goal before passing to the right wing to Martin. The teenager surged into the penalty area and despite being dispossessed by a defender he won the ball back before sending a fierce shot into the net. United’s ascendency was reduced marginally as Murray was withdrawn to ensure he did not aggravate his injury with Brashaw returning to his defensive position alongside Gregg Allison, Stuart McMullan and Alan Patterson.
Barn came back into the game and almost went ahead after 75 minutes however an exceptional double save by Coburn came to his teams rescue. Davis went into central midfield and became much more prominent in the closing quarter providing passes for Allison and Owen O’Neill on the right and Burtney or Stuart McMullan on the left while Ian McMullan chased every ball. It would be his perseverance that led to United winning the game but in quite bizarre circumstances.
As the game entered injury time Ian McMullan chased a through ball however the Barn goalkeeper came out and collected the ball. Unbelievably the keeper pushed the ball into McMullan’s face and he was sent off by the referee who was left with no option but to award a penalty. Absolute mayhem followed and it took six minutes until the referee was able to calm things down for Alan Patterson to slot home the penalty despite a valiant effort to save it by the stand in keeper. The referee blew the final whistle as soon as the game restarted perhaps fearing some indiscipline which sadly proved to be the case. United will have considered themselves extremely fortunate to gain all three points welcome while a moment of madness led to Barn missing out on the point they deserved. This week travel to Dromara Village for a league game.
Intermediate Cup Round 1
Ballynahinch United fresh from their 50th anniversary dinner the previous night were perhaps not surprisingly a little jaded for this game and this showed in the first half when they found themselves 1 – 0 down.
In the second half there was a much improved performance as they laid siege to the Seapatrick goal with wave after wave of attack. The visitors held on to late in the second half with veteran goalkeeper Alan Blackwood who played for United in the 1997 Clarence Cup Final in excellent form. United’s equaliser came from Gregg Allison whose powerful shot from outside the penalty area flew into the net. United were now on the ascendency but they took their eye of the game immediately after scoring and paid the penalty as a Seapatrick forward burst into the penalty area to rifle a shot past Coburn in the United goal. Despite a valiant effort United could not get a second equaliser.
This weekend United will return to league action with a home game against St. Luke’s with a 7.30pm kick off.