Belfast Telegraph

Whitey Anderson dreaming of great escape for Ballinamallard

Ballymena United 1 - Ballinamallard United 2

By Billy Weir

Ballinamallard United boss Whitey Anderson is asking his players to dig deep one last time to keep Fermanagh's only senior club in the top flight.

Trailing to Tony Kane's free-kick for Ballymena United on Saturday, the Mallards' turnaround commenced with Emmet Friars' equaliser. Friars had a hand, or rather head, in the winner too - his effort punched off the line by David Cushley, whose Ballymena career ended with a red card and a penalty slotted home by Stephen O'Flynn.

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It now sets up a last day shoot-out with Carrick Rangers. Ballinamallard must match or better whatever Warrenpoint do against Dungannon to guarantee at least a play-off, but win at Taylors Avenue and they are safe.

"This has to be our biggest game ever," said Anderson. "The club has fought hard to get there and I know that group of players will fight to keep us here."

Wins for Ballinamallard and Warrenpoint would mean that Portadown could be pulled into the equation if they lose at Ballymena, with the Braidmen hoping for that scenario too as it would earn them a place in the play-off for a European spot.

"I can tell you now that we're not looking to beat Portadown because we may get seventh, I just want to beat Portadown because I want to win a game of football," said Sky Blues boss David Jeffrey.

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