Slane survive scare and snatch injury-time winner

Goalscorers for Moneyslane on Saturday Gregg Harrison, Gareth Bingham and Stevie Adair.
Goalscorers for Moneyslane on Saturday Gregg Harrison, Gareth Bingham and Stevie Adair.

A stunning second half comeback on Saturday ensured it will be a blue and white Christmas in Moneyslane this year.

At half-time, the hosts trailed Hanover 3-1 but substitute Steve Adair netted an injury time winner after his side had hauled themselves back into their last league game of the year.

Opponents Hanover were the early favourites for the title and a win would have seen them overtake second placed Slane with four games in hand.

For the hosts, Mark Ervine was still on holiday and the influential Jonny Gibson was ruled out with injury.

Nonetheless, Moneyslane started really well with Whitten winning a number of challenges and had the first chance when Coulter played in Harrison but his shot from the angle was well saved.

Then Jordan Fairley burst through and his lob looked goal bound until a defender cleared it off the line.

Slane were on top with Coulter, Bingham and Quilty playing some neat football but the Hanover front two were lively and the away team forced a number of corners.

Former Slane player Kerr could have seen red after a tasty challenge on Harrison left the Slane striker with a broken shin pad and gash below the knee.

Slane took the lead on 25 minutes when Coulter played a superb reverse pass to Bingham and the skipper fired home from 25 yards via a deflection. Harrison then had the ball in the net from a Peden knock down but that effort was ruled out for offside. Anderson then fired just over from 16 yards when well placed.

On 33 minutes, the game changed when the Hanover striker nipped in to head past Blevins for the equaliser and five minutes later, the same player headed home from a corner to give Hanover the lead. Unbelievably, following another corner a Hanover player found the top corner to give the away team a 3-1 lead.

With a slight change of formation, Slane came out to have a go in the second half and could have scored two in the opening exchanges.

On 55 minutes, Harrison headed home from a corner to give Moneyslane a lifeline. Blevins then produced an excellent save when one on one with a striker. That stop was to prove vital and was soon rewarded as the home team drew level.

Adair had come on for Fairley and then Harrison beat the defender to a through ball, calmly side-stepped the keeper and fired into the empty net from 12 yards out.

Both teams had chances to take the lead with Slane’s best opportunities coming from a Bingham drive, a Harrison rebound and then somehow Adair failed to connect two yards out. It seemed they would have to settle for a draw.

However, there was to be late, late drama. In injury-time, Slane forced one last corner and when the ball was headed out, Quilty put in a super cross and Adair headed the ball into the top corner to send Jubilee Park into raptures.

MONEYSLANE: Blevins, Whitten, Boyd, Shilliday, Peden, Coulter, Bingham, Quilty, Harrison, Jordan Fairley, Anderson.

Subs: Jason Fairley, Adair, Adamson.