Ardee Celtic. (Pic: Ciarán Culligan)
NEFL Premier Division
Ardee Celtic 0-4 Trim Celtic
Ardee Celtic suffered a heavy home defeat to fellow mid-table opponents, Trim Celtic, at Townparks on Friday night.
The match was all but over at half-time with John Flanagan’s men trailing 3-0 - all three goals coming during a forgettable five minute period just before half-time.
Ardee had actually started quite well, with Shawni Dowdall twice testing the Trim ‘keeper in the opening quarter, but the Meath men gradually turned the screw, forcing the Deesiders into mistakes, and it was from one of those errors that they hit the front as Declan Butler was beaten.
Within two minutes, the lead was doubled and it was three five minutes from the interval with Butler’s fingertip contact not enough to skew an effort off target.
The second half was a slow burner, though both custodians were called into action. Ryan Burns and Gareth Kane had attempts for the hosts, but Trim added a fourth with seven minutes to go, looping over Hugh Murphy, who had replaced the injured Butler.
It was a disappointing way for Ardee to finish their league campaign, but having comfortably retained their place in the top-flight, Flanagan can promptly start building towards the new season.
Ardee Celtic: Declan Butler; Lorcan Myles, Pierce Hawkins, Niall Sharkey, Robbie Reynolds; Shawni Dowdall, Kevin Treanor, Aaron Roche, Gareth Kane; Ryan Burns, Bryan O’Connor
Subs: Hugh Murphy, Darren Clarke