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Carrick Rangers draw comfort as they inch further away from bottom spot

Warrenpoint Town 0 Carrick Rangers 0


Cathair Friel

Cathair Friel

Cathair Friel

Given the fact that, between them, Warrenpoint Town and Carrick Rangers hadn't produced a win in their previous 14 games, there was always a big chance that this tie would end up a stalemate - and so it proved.

There was plenty of endeavour from two of the bottom four, but the lack of quality only served as a reminder of why they aren't any further up the league table.

The draw at least allowed Carrick to move four clear of bottom side Dungannon Swifts.

It was the visitors, without a win in five coming in, who had the first chance in the fifth minute. When Chris Rodgers' shot was deflected wide by Daniel Byrne, from the corner by Reece Neale, 'Point keeper Andy Coleman held a header from Carrick captain Daniel Kelly.

However, as the half wore on it was the hosts, winless in their last nine, who looked by far the most threatening and they went close midway through the first period when Ryan Swan pounced on a loose ball to fire in a shot that Carrick keeper Aaron Hogg pushed round the post.

From the corner that followed, Hogg spilled Kealan Dillon's delivery but when Brandon Doyle hooked it towards the unguarded net, Chris Ramsey was on hand to nod it clear. Byrne then landed his own hooked effort on top of the net shortly after, before Warrenpoint's best chance of the half came on the half-hour mark.

A long clearance from Coleman was well flicked on by Alan O'Sullivan and into the path of Swan. He held off the attentions of Rodgers, but dragged wide.

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Alan O’Sullivan

Alan O’Sullivan

Inpho/Stephen Hamilton

Alan O’Sullivan

At the other end, despite having little to do, Coleman remained alert to come racing out of his goal and make a fine sliding tackle on Cathair Friel.

Carrick thought they had broken the deadlock on 62 minutes when Friel got on the end of Lee Chapman's deep delivery from the right, but his close-range volley was miscued before O'Sullivan's ball across goal a minute later at the other end was just out of the reach of Swan.

Swan, by the midway stage of the second period, was sporting a bandage around his head and on his third shirt after suffering a head wound and spurned another glorious chance to put the 'Point in front on 71 minutes.

A slick move involving O'Sullivan and Dillon saw the latter slide the ball through to Swan inside the box. He cleverly turned Ramsey but his low effort was weak and straight at Hogg.

It encapsulated the game - plenty of work, some decent football, but no end product.

Warrenpoint Town: Coleman, Deasy (Gallagher 60), Ball, Wallace, Byrne, Hutchinson (Mullen 87), McCaffrey, Dillon, Swan, O'Sullivan, Doyle (Carroll 77).

Subs not used: Sava, McVeigh, Cowan, Quinn.

Carrick Rangers: Hogg, Forsythe, Neale, Rodgers, Ramsey (Loughran 73), Kelly, Cherry (McMullan 85), Chapman (Smith 80), Gibson, Cathair Friel, Anderson.

Subs not used: Connor Friel, Glendinning, Jenkins, Storey.

Referee: Ross Dunlop

Man of the match: Daniel Clarke

Match rating: 5/10

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