ALL PICTURES: ARTHUR KINAHAN
Dundalk & District U19 League
Ardee Celtic 4 Glenmuir Utd 1
Ardee Celtic became only the third team from the Deeside town to lift a Dundalk and District League trophy when they captured the 2019 U19 league championship with a 4-1 victory, in an incident packed match, against Glenmuir on Saturday evening.
Delayed owing to the coronavirus, they joined the Deeside United double winners of 1928/’29 and 1935/’36 league champions, and Second Division winners, 1971, St. Brigid’s in taking honours back to mid-Louth.
The opening exchanges were dominated by Glenmuir and the Dundalk side could have been a couple of goals to the good before the impressive James Rogers was quickest to react to a parried save by Eddie McGuire on 18 minutes to put Ardee ahead.
Both sides created chances after the opening score but it was Jamie Ward who struck with a simple tap-in the 33rd minute, doubling the home side’s advantage. Shortly after a superb save by the Glens ’keeper made sure his side turned over just two goals behind.
Three minutes into the second half, Ryan Halpenny, with a superb strike from a dead ball situation, found the roof of the net to stretch the lead further.
In the 54th minute, Mark Agnew, the standout player in the visitors’ selection, showed what he could do from a long-distance free-kick to reduce the leeway to 3-1. Minutes later, Rogers broke free of the Glens’ defences only to be hacked down as he sped to a one-on-one with the No1, bringing his involvement to an end.
The loss of Rogers affected the home side and as the Glens were looking like they could snatch another goal they had a defender sent-off for a second yellow card with 15 minutes remaining.
Against the 10 men, Ardee regained control and brought a series of magnificent saves from McGuire. The Glens had another player dismissed close to the end and a well-taken strike by Adam Farrell sealed Ardee Celtic’s league title win.
Players to stand out were Rogers and Halpenny of Ardee along with McGuire and Agnew of Glenmuir.
Ardee Celtic: S Halpenny, P Kenny, A McAneany, F Kelly, S O’Callaghan, J Ward, D Tibona, R Halpenny, D Rogers, V Mellosky, M Takow, A Farrell, R Levins, H Butterly, T Fearns, L Dunne, K Foran.
Glenmuir United: E Maguire, M Cummings, B Luko, V Lgallo, T Lackle, K Rafferty, S Wesley, L McStravick, V Ihemeje, M Agnew, K Watters, K Newell, S Cassidy, A Cummings, P O’Rourke.