Lack of discipline costs Town again in harsh loss

Banbidge Town followed up their Bob Radcliffe Cup exit to Tandragee with another defeat and another red card at Limavady. Edward Byrne Photography INBL1437-248EB
Banbidge Town followed up their Bob Radcliffe Cup exit to Tandragee with another defeat and another red card at Limavady. Edward Byrne Photography INBL1437-248EB

Banbridge Town made the long journey to last season’s Championship One outfit Limavady United on Saturday but once again were the authors of their own downfall after wasting a host of chances and worryingly showing a lack of discipline for the third successive week, losing another player to a red card early in the game.

This time it was influential skipper Stephen Greene and his dismissal came at a time when Town were in control and creating goal chances. As on the two previous occasions, it ultimately resulted in the visitors losing a game they could and should have got something out of.

Manager Ryan Watson is having a nightmare getting a settled team and last week was no exception. Shannon Drainey and the suspended Michael Ferguson were added to the long list of unavailable players although Glen Waddell and Mattie McCartan returned to the squad.

It was Waddell who started the move on seven minutes that should have seen Town take the lead when he picked out Ally Wilson with a defence splitting pass and the latter turned superbly before finding the unmarked Conor Downey in front of goal only for him to fire wide.

However, the game was to turn against the visitors after 26 minutes when skipper Greene picked up a second yellow for a reckless challenge on Limavady’s Murray. Mark Teggart assumed the captain’s armband for the remainder of the game.

Town held out to the break and after 53 minutes Wilson burst down the left and fired across goal only for Conor Downey to snub the chance to put Town in front as McGraw floundered in the home goal.

Limavady introduced sub. Ferris after 65 minutes and the strapping forward was to make a real impact with a goal and two assists. 70 minutes were on the clock when he sent Harkin free on the right to slot past the helpless McConville.

Home keeper McGraw palmed away another Wilson effort before Limavady’s Ferguson saw red to even up the numbers.

Neil Watson replaced Nathan Baird as Town went for broke and the big man brought a save from McGraw with his first header.

The game was in the melting pot until the 90th minute when Heaney latched onto a Ferris pass on the edge of the box and blasted home before, four minutes into injury time, Ferris bulldozed through the Town rearguard to slot home.

It was undoubtedly a harsh scoreline on Town who had battled bravely with 10 men and created enough chances to have taken at least a point.

However the disciplinary factor is something which the management will have to take a look at and erase quickly if more vital point are not to be conceded.

TOWN: McConville, Wilson, Baird, Greene, Waddell, Jones, Teggart, Buchanan, Wilson, Downey, Gray.

Subs: McCartan (Gray 45), Watson (Baird 74), Gourley (Wilson 82), Orr.