Dungannon Swifts win again but Murphy still staying focused
Dungannon Swifts 1 Ballinamallard United 0: Dungannon's perfect start continued with as comfortable a success as a 1-0 scoreline can probably ever be.
In charge from the outset, they were concerned only for a relatively few minutes as the Mallards summoned up a late surge.
"The story of my game was that I won a penalty and scored it. I was fouled by the keeper and hurt myself in the groin area in that challenge. I tried to run it off but opted to go off as a precaution," stated match-winner Matt Hazley (pictured).
Asked whether Ballinamallard keeper Alvin Rouse should have been sent off, Hazley had a clear opinion.
"In terms of the rules, I think he should have been sent off – as last man. But it is always better to play 11 against 11 and I am glad the decision had no bearing on the outcome.
"It was a good progression from last week and, if we can continue to do that, we will not be far from the top six," he added.
Both managers agreed that the better team won.
Jubilant Darren Murphy picked out positives and negatives.
"Winning our first two games is a fantastic start to the season, the best in quite a few years but we won't be getting carried away," assured the Stangmore boss.
Ballinamallard's Whitey Anderson had no issue with the result, admitting his side were below par but stating that they will bounce back.
"To be honest, if we had taken a point from this game, it would have been harsh on Dungannon," admitted the Ferney Park supremo.
"Swifts were hungrier from the start, knew what they wanted and set about getting it. In contrast, some of my players thought that they were still on the training ground.
"I gave them a rocket at half-time and there was an improvement but they still lacked that final third presence.
"Some might have still had it in their heads that if they can defeat Crusaders, they can beat Dungannon. That is wrong," stated Anderson.
Swifts enjoyed the best of the early play and were denied an opener on 17 minutes when Rouse sliced a shot from Stefan Lavery over his bar.
Three minutes later, the former Barbados international went from hero to villain when he tripped Hazley, conceding a penalty but escaping a card. Hazley, with two goals last week, confidently scored.
Striker James Costello had a golden opportunity to embellish the win but his shot hit the left upright.