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Ten men enough for Glentoran as winning run continues

By Kevin Hughes jnr

Dungannon Swifts 1 Glentoran 2: Glentoran pulled off an against-the-odds win to move up to third place after their fifth win in a six-game unbeaten run.

The Glens, with Jordan Stewart pulling all their strings, led through Marcus Kane's goal on 29 minutes when he pounced on a blunder from keeper Niall Morgan to poke the ball to the net from six yards.

The lead was short-lived, however, as Swifts were awarded a penalty 65 seconds later and Darren Boyce thumped the ball into the net.

The sides level, Swifts were edging possession and received an unexpected boost to their hopes seven minutes into the second half when their opponents had Jimmy Callacher dismissed for a second yellow card offence.

Swifts didn't make the numerical advantage count, though, as they struggled to create chances. The closest they came was a Dermot McCaffrey free which came back off the crossbar and Boyce then squandered a superb opportunity when he rushed a shot after getting clear of the visiting defence.

This left the door open and the Glens bagged the points with eight minutes left, a cross from Kane volleyed into the net by Jason Hill from the right corner of the box.

The matchwinner put the victory down to the team's hard work paying off.

"Sometimes, if you work hard enough, you get a bit of luck and sometimes you deserve it," said Hill.

"In the first half for 25 minutes we bossed the play but then conceded a silly penalty after taking the lead.

"When we went down to 10, Dungannon had most of the play, without creating much. We worked hard to get a chance and, when it came, we took it.

"I took a corner on the right and stayed up field and when the ball came back in I was lucky enough to send it to the back of the net."

Glentoran are on a good run and progressing up the table but Hill isn't getting carried away.

"We are taking one game at a time, working hard in training and matches. When we do that, we get results. But we don't have any targets."

And Hill, whose winner was his first goal of the season, hopes that his score will lay some demons to rest.

"It was good to score as I missed a penalty in the last game against Dungannon and also missed an open net so hopefully this will get the boys off my back," he added.

For Dungannon, it doesn't get any easier; next up is Linfield and manager Darren Murphy, a former Linfield player, has an insight into the approach they will have to a visit to Dungannon.

"They will be coming to Stangmore knowing they are playing a team low in confidence and they will set out to win the game inside the opening 20 minutes."

Murphy doesn't have a tactic to combat that, but knows the characteristics needed from his players.

"You have to be a man and stand up to the challenge and not wilt like a dying flower. If you don't stand up to the physical challenge, the game will be over in 20 minutes!" he warned.

DUNGANNON: Morgan, Fitzpatrick (Brennan 49 mins), McMinn, McCaffrey, Grieve, Harpur (Hazley 72 mins), Hutchinson, Costello (S Lavery 58 mins), Douglas, Boyce, C Lavery. Subs: Topley, McCullough.

GLENTORAN: Morris, O'Neill, Hill, Callacher, Bradley, M Clarke, Stewart, R Clarke (Magee 57 mins), Kane, Miskimmin, McAlorum. Subs: Magee Henderson, Addis, McGuigan, Hughes.

Referee: Arnold Hunter (Maguiresbridge)

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