Belfast Telegraph

Darren Murphy slams Dungannon Swifts' attitude after Coleraine defeat

Coleraine 1-0 Dungannon Swifts

By Keith Thomas

Dungannon Swifts manager Darren Murphy felt his players had entered the twilight zone at the Showgrounds.

Frustrated Murphy reckoned he could have been forgiven for believing the end-of-season feel had catapulted him into spring.

He accepted Coleraine deserved the win but was left baffled by his players' inertia.

"The game lacked energy," he said. "There was almost an end of season atmosphere and for some reason we struggled to make any impact.

"It was a poor game but Coleraine wanted success more than we did and that's why they won."

The Swifts arrived without a league win since mid-September and hoping to protect a record of five games without defeat at Ballycastle Road but they never threatened keeper Michael Doherty after striker James McLaughlin produced the only bright spot of the day.

His 10th minute scissors kick goal proved decisive and extended his total for the season to 10. It was enough to carve out a fourth successive league win for Coleraine and keeps them in fourth place in the table a point behind Cliftonville, who visit the Showgrounds on Saturday.

The striker slipped in front of his marker before launching himself to connect with midfielder Neil McCafferty's corner from 14 yards out.

Manager Oran Kearney was impressed.

"His technique was superb and the goal deserved to be the defining moment of a game that was far from being one for the purist," he said.

"The game wasn't the prettiest but for me it was all about managing it after we went in front and we did that."

COLERAINE: Doherty, Kane, Beverland, Mullan (Falconer, 73 mins), Douglas, McCauley, (McGonigle, 71 mins), McCafferty, Harkin, Brown, McLaughlin, Parkhill (Lyons, 73 mins). Unused subs: Watt, Law.

Dungannon: Coleman, Montgomery, Armstrong, Burns, McCaffrey, Lowe, Wilson (Burke, 64 mins), Teggart (Douglas, 73 mins), Hazley (Glackin, 22 mins), Mitchell, McElroy. Unused subs: McCullough, Addis.

Man of the Match: James McLaughlin

Match rating: 6/10

Referee: Ray Hetherington (Dungannon)

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