Belfast Telegraph

Eddie Patterson raps officials over 'poor' offside calls

By Gareth Cauldwell

Glentoran were denied all three points on Saturday as Ballinamallard captain Mark Stafford's injury time header earned his side a share of the spoils at Ferney Park. Eddie Patterson's men appeared to be on their way to the win as they hit back after trailing at the interval to Anthony Elding's opener.

A strong second-half display from the Glens saw them respond with goals from Jay Magee and a superb Curtis Allen overhead effort.

However, with the game deep in added on time, the away side conceded a free kick and Raymond Foy's delivery was met by Stafford, who clinched a draw for the Mallards.

Patterson was disappointed that his side did not return home with the three points and was frustrated by the decisions to rule out first-half goals from Allen and Stephen McAlorum for offside.

He said: "Curtis Allen's goal was perfectly onside and the McAlorum goal; how can he (the linesman) see that the guy is blocking the goalkeeper's view? The referee has that view because he is looking straight down the park.

"I questioned the referee at half time and he said the linesman had got it right. I asked him why did he not blow directly when he saw the infringement; he waited on the linesman's flag because he had given the goal. They were two very poor decisions."

Patterson was, though, pleased with his players' second-half performance.

"The first 20 minutes I thought we were very poor and it took us a while to get to grips with it.

"Once we got to grips with it, I thought we saw a bit more of what Glentoran are all about in the last 20 minutes of the first half and I thought the football we played in the second half was superb.

"But the silly free kick we gave away at the end and the two bad decisions in the first half cost us the game.

"We're disappointed, we should be going up the road with the three points and I said to Whitey (Anderson) afterwards that they got out of jail."

Anderson differed in opinion, believing his side merited a share of the spoils as they recorded their third draw out of four games.

"I'm delighted that we got the point and I think we deserved a point," he said.

"I would have been very disappointed if we had come away with nothing."

On Stafford's late leveller, he added: "Raymond Foy has great quality on the ball, he put a great delivery in and there is no better man than Mark Stafford to come on the end of it and I was just glad to see the linesman keep his flag down. I'm delighted for the players and, although we have three draws, over the last 10 games we have only lost one match."

There was also praise for midfielder John Currie, who produced an all-action man of the match performance in the engine room for the Mallards.

"John Currie gave that much to the game he had cramp in the second half," revealed Ferney Park boss Anderson.

"He was absolutely outstanding, I thought the wee man was superb. When he gets on the ball he plays it short and sharp and makes us play.

"There are a lot of positives for us to take out of the game."

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