Belfast Telegraph

Glentoran's Stephen McAlorum ends long wait with a special winning goal against Dungannon Swifts

By Adrian Rutherford

It had taken more than two years for a league goal from Stephen McAlorum – but in the end it proved well worth the wait for Glentoran fans.

Not only was it one of the best individual strikes seen at the Oval this season, it also secured a crucial win against Dungannon Swifts.

The midfielder picked the ball up just outside the box and shifted it on to his left foot before finding the net with a spectacular drive.

It finally ended more than 80 minutes of resistance from Dungannon, who looked like adding to the growing frustration around east Belfast in recent times.

McAlorum said: "The ball was headed down, I was going to hit it with my right foot but I saw their player would have blocked it, so I took it with my left.

"I tried to hit it as best I could and thankfully it went in."

Although not a regular scorer, when McAlorum does find the net they tend to be special.

Earlier this season he hit an eye-catching strike in the Glens' League Cup win against Moyola Park and Saturday's winner was equally impressive on a day when the Danske Bank Premiership enjoyed no shortage of top quality conversions.

"When I score they are good ones," he joked. "I take them any way they come.

"The most important thing today was getting back on track with three points."

It was going to take something special to break the deadlock with the woodwork frustrating Glentoran no fewer than three times over the course of what had been a difficult afternoon.

The first came after 36 minutes. Curtis Allen took a pass from McAlorum and rattled the crossbar with a powerful left-foot strike and then, in the second half, William Garrett's effort cannoned off the bar, while a header from Johnny Addis also struck the woodwork.

McAlorum also drew a fine save from the goalkeeper with a 25-yard drive.

"That has been the story of our season," he added. "We've played teams off the park with lovely football.

"Today we hit the bar three times and had plenty of chances.

"That is why teams are coming and trying to sit against us.

"We will take that as a positive – teams do fear us and try and stop us. We just need to learn to break teams down.

"We've been playing well this season and not getting anything, so the objective today was to get three points.

"The fact that we did gives us something to build on."

Dungannon's main chances fell to Jamie Glackin and Gary Liggett, but otherwise it was a disappointing performance from the visitors.

Manager Darren Murphy admitted few players could take credit for their efforts.

"I think the bottom line is that we weren't good enough," he said.

"Players will always look for excuses. Sometimes the biggest reason is yourself.

"That's the hardest one to admit to. It's easy to look around and blame someone else, but it's harder to look in the mirror and say I wasn't good enough.

"There wasn't many who came off today and could say they did well."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph