Belfast Telegraph

Alan Kernaghan is so proud of his resilient Glentoran

Ballinamallard 2-4 Glentoran

By Gareth Cauldwell

Glentoran manager Alan Kernaghan praised his side's determination and character as they returned home from a wet and windy Ferney Park with all three points.

This was a hard-fought 4-2 win for the Glens, who twice saw Ballinamallard come from behind to level the contest.

But Glentoran finished the game strongly and Kernaghan feels that they were rewarded for their bravery in possession as they grabbed goals from Fra McCaffrey and Curtis Allen to clinch the victory.

The east-Belfast side, who had the advantage of the conditions in the first-half, had taken the lead through McCaffrey but the Mallards responded before half-time with a well worked Adam Lecky goal.

Kernaghan's charges got their noses back in front from a Jonathan Smith goal but again the home side replied as Jason McCartney converted from the spot.

However, Glentoran were not to be pegged back for a third time after McCaffrey netted his second and Allen made sure of the points with his side's fourth late on.

Kernaghan said: "We showed real determination and character because we knew that Ballinamallard had the conditions in their favour (in the second-half) and we would be under pressure but I said to them that we would get chances on the break and thankfully that proved right and we were able to take a few of them."

The win was a second in a row for Glentoran and the former Republic of Ireland international is pleased with how things are taking shape.

"I'm delighted. All the players have bought in to what I want to do and they are trying to carry it out to the letter, which is all I can ask. I think they are showing their ability as well. They are being braver and taking more chances when they are in possession and that is culminating in them creating more chances and hence scoring more goals," he added.

For Ballinamallard, it was a fifth straight league defeat and manager Whitey Anderson was disappointed with the nature of some of the goals they conceded on Saturday.

"We are disappointed that we didn't take something from the game. We got back to 2-2 and we thought we could have pushed on to win the game but we were disappointed in the end, especially with the goals as they came from wide areas and we didn't defend them," he said.

And the Mallards face another stern test with a visit to Windsor Park to take on Linfield next up.

"We need to stick together and keep working hard like we always do," said Anderson.

"We will go up there and believe that we can get a result. We went up to Windsor Park and won in the cup although we know that it is going to be tough."

Ballinamallard United: McCusker, McMenamin, Feeney (Campbell 74mins), McCabe, Lafferty (Courtney 85mins), McCartney, Beacom, Lecky, McCrudden (Currie 81mins), Friars.

Subs not used: McKenna, Crilly.

Glentoran: Morris, Holland, McCullough, Magee, Addis, Allen, Smith, McCaffrey, McAlorum, Caldwell (Gordon 46mins), Henderson.

Subs not used: Hogg, O'Hanlon, Cafolla, Hamill.

Man of the match: Jonathan Smith

Match rating: 6/10

Referee: Raymond Crangle (Belfast)

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