Belfast Telegraph

Warrenpoint players delighted to repay boss Stephen McDonnell, says Forde

Warrenpoint Town 4 Dungannon Swifts 3

Lorcan Forde
Lorcan Forde

By Steven Beacom

Warrenpoint match-winner Lorcan Forde declared that the club's first league win of the season was for manager Stephen McDonnell and his coaching staff.

With the score 3-3 at Milltown against Dungannon Swifts, Forde entered the fray on 86 minutes. In the 93rd he produced a clever finish from fellow substitute Brandon Doyle's driving run and cross.

The last gasp goal gave Town their first league success of the season after suffering eight defeats in a row.

McDonnell was under pressure going into the game but Saturday's victory and the way his team battled to earn the points showed the players want him to remain in situ.

The feeling amongst the fans post match amid crazy scenes of celebration and jubilation was clearly the same.

Earlier, Kris Lindsay's Dungannon led 2-0 at half-time thanks to fabulous strikes from Oisin Smyth and Michael Carvill before Town launched a stunning comeback playing a more direct style than usual with Conall Young netting a superb free-kick and the outstanding Alan O'Sullivan grabbing a brace, one of which was a penalty.

The classy Carvill equalised for the visitors but in windy and wet conditions the home side had the final say thanks to Forde's calm finish.

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"I only touched the ball twice when I came on and the second one was to get the winner," said Forde, who is on loan from Linfield.

"It was more about the strong performance from the team though. The boys played really well on the day and deserved to get our first points on the board."

Paying tribute to McDonnell, assistant Colm Barron and the rest of the coaching staff, Forde added: "The results haven't been good and you obviously enjoy it more when you are winning but the lads at Warrenpoint are great and Stephen and his staff are fantastic as well.

"I'm so glad for them that we have got our first win this season. Stephen, Colm and the staff work really hard for the club and the players and it was great for us to give something back to them.

"We put everything in against Dungannon and it was brilliant to get the win.

"I believe we can kick on now. Coleraine away from home is next.

"That is a very tough game but beating Dungannon will give everyone more confidence and I think we can give a good account of ourselves."

Dungannon are having a fine season but disappointed boss Lindsay stated it was vital his team learnt from the defeat.

In contrast, opposite number McDonnell was the happiest man in Milltown.

WARRENPOINT: Turker, Bennett (Forde 86), Smith, Reilly, O'Sullivan, Young (Doyle 83), Prendergast (Lynch 74), Watters, Scannell, O'Connor, Wallace. Subs not used: Moran, White, Donnelly, Mullen.

DUNGANNON: Johnston, Redman, King, Clucas, Hughes, Smyth (Campbell 67), Teggart, Patton, Lowe, Carvill, Wade (Gallagher 81). Subs not used: Addis, Byers, Taylor, Coyle, Harwood.

Referee: Tim Marshall.

Man of the match: Alan O'Sullivan (Warrenpoint).

Match rating: 9/10.

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