Danske Bank League Fixture on August 20th 2016

Officials from Glenavon Football Club met recently with a Linfield FC representative to discuss the difficulties experienced by our supporters gaining access to Windsor Park before the recent league fixture in August. The main points of that discussion are summarised below.

  • It was explained that normal practice is that prior to a game a number of tickets are printed off from the Ticketmaster system and given to the ticket staff for sale. The amount printed is based on the estimated attendance for the game. Unfortunately the number of Concession tickets provided originally, 100, was inadequate and sold out rapidly before kick off. The fact that these tickets were about to sell out was not communicated in a timely manner which lead to a delay in printing more tickets and delivering these to the ticket office. The Linfield representative acknowledged this was not acceptable and we were assured that measures will be put in place to ensure that this does not happen again when we next visit Windsor Park.
  • We are aware that some supporters did not wait for these additional tickets to arrive and decided to pay an Adult ticket instead at an additional cost. A number of fans reported that they did this on the understanding that they would receive a £3 refund at half time but were subsequently unable to do so. This was raised with the  Linfield official during the meeting. He indicated that he could not understand how this offer could have been made as the ticket point closes 15/20 minutes after kick off.
  • We did acknowledge that in order to alleviate congestion the Stadium Safety did allow a number of our young fans into the game for free. We are grateful for his efforts.
  • A number of our supporters had also complained that because of mobility issues they had great difficulty accessing the upper tier of the North Stand. During our discussion we were informed  that the Upper Tier will continue to house visiting fans in the future. We were assured, however, that there is a facility for the Lower Tier to be made available to supporters with mobility issues if they make themselves known to Security staff. Arrangements will also be put in place to accommodate in the South Stand supporters who requires the use of a wheelchair. Any supporter who wishes to avail of this facility should contact the Glenavon office prior to our next game at Windsor Park to ensure the necessary arrangements are put in place.
  • It was explained to us that the facility for cash payment at turnstiles no longer exists. The redevelopment of the stadium includes the introduction of unmanned turnstiles with all supporters required to purchase a ticket to gain access. During our visit we  discussed a number of possible alternative ‘ticket office’ sites to that used in August.
  • Plans for the development of the Stadium and surrounding area include proposals for new facilities at the Midgely Park site. When these are completed this will allow access for visiting supporters to the North Stand. This work is unlikely to be completed, however, during the 2016/17 season and in the interim supporters will continue to access the stadium via the Donegall Avenue entrance.
  • In light of the above we undertook to ask supporters to consider their journey times when next visiting Windsor Park.

In conclusion we would want to record our thanks to the Linfield  representative for the frank and positive manner in which he approached the discussion and hope that the measures put in place will ensure that the difficulties experienced by our supporters in August do not occur again.

Result: Coleraine 2-2 Glenavon

No Joel Cooper in the squad today, possibly due to an injury , so it’s a start on the left wing for Paddy McCourt.

Early chance for Glenavon inside the first two minutes with Eoin Bradley getting beyond his man but Chris Johns beat away a shot from Andy Hall who took charge of the ball ahead of Bradley.

David Elebert limped off after just 13 minutes when he seemed to injure his ankle on landing after heading a cross.

Photo by Alan Weir

Photo by Alan Weir

Bradley put the Lurgan Blues ahead in the 31st minute when he headed in a cross from the left by Andy Hall. McCourt had been involved in the build-up which led to a corner. He had pinged an accurate cross field pass from left to right to find Rhys Marshall. He cut across the edge of the box before squaring a pass to McCourt who took a touch before shooting, the ball being deflected out for a corner. This was taken by Hall but only half cleared and the winger crossed it back in to the middle where Bradley found himself unmarked and his header went in off the underside of the bar.

Photo by Alan Weir

Photo by Alan Weir

Mark Sykes spurned a great chance to double the lead in the 54th minute when he glanced a superb cross by Rhys Marshall just wide after finding himself unmarked six yards out.

Paddy McCourt then went on a mesmerising run into the Coleraine box and put over a superb low cross that was missed by everyone in the middle.

Kevin Braniff tapped in from close range to make it 2-0 to the visitors in the 68th minute when Bradley ran on to Andrew Doyle’s ball down the right and cut the ball back from the bye line.

Kevin Braniff celebrates with Eoin Bradley after making it 2-0 to Glenavon. Photo by Alan Weir

Kevin Braniff celebrates with Eoin Bradley after making it 2-0 to Glenavon. Photo by Alan Weir

Hall had the ball in the net eight minutes later when his left foot shot hit the post and ended up in the net, possibly off the back of the Coleraine keeper but the offside flag went up against Ciaran Martyn. Would like to see a replay of that decision!

Bradley forced Johns to tip a fierce drive over the bar when he ran onto another pass from Doyle.

Two goals in four minutes drew the home side level in the 86th minute.

Bannsiders sub Jamie McGonigle pulled a goal back in the 82nd minute when he smashed Darren McCauley’s cut back into the roof of the net.

Johns then beat away a free kick by Bradley but moments later it was 2-2 when Coleraine’s other sub Jordan Allan ran onto a low cross from the right by McGonigle and fired a low shot into the bottom corner.

Jordan Allan equalises for Coleraine. Photo by Alan Weir

Jordan Allan equalises for Coleraine. Photo by Alan Weir

There was a great chance in stoppage time for Hall as Bradley slid the ball across the six yard box but the the Glenavon winger missed the ball and the keeper gathered and released it quickly but Coleraine spurned the chance to win it as they break but McAuley missed the target when well placed.

Five minutes of stoppage time.

Full time 2-2 and it feels like a loss to the Glenavon fans in a game which the Lurgan Blues dominated.

Coleraine: Johns, Mullan, Ogilby, McConaghie, Brown, McCauley, McCafferty, Kee (c), Parkhill, Twigg, McLaughlin. Subs: Higgins, Edgar, Morrow, McGonigle, (Parkhill 71), Allan (Twigg 53)

Glenavon: Tuffey, Doyle, Lindsay, Elebert, Marshall, Hall, Martyn, Sykes, McCourt (c), Bradley, Braniff. Subs: Hamilton (McCourt 72), Kilmartin, Patton (Elebert 13), McGrory, Bates (Braniff 88)

Referee: Raymond Hetherington

 

Preview: Coleraine v Glenavon

danske-logoGlenavon hit the road again tomorrow for the third away trip in a row, for game #9 in the Danske Bank Premiership as they take on Coleraine. Although Glenavon won all four games against the Bannsiders last season, Oran Kearney’s side have made a solid start to the season with three wins and a couple of draws in their first seven games so Glenavon manager Gary Hamilton is expecting a tough encounter.ctdffzlwcaa1tsi

“Although we beat them four out of four last season, the score lines sometimes didn’t reflect the game and this season, as well as James McLaughlin, Oran has other players chipping in with goals. The season before it was them who took more points off us so it will be a tough game.

“We’ll need to be on top of our game and put in a good shift tomorrow. I’ve been pleased enough with the way we played in the last two league games and the lads showed their resilience last week when it was 10 against 9 so we are going there with a positive attitude,” Gary told us.

The Lurgan Blues boss and defender Kris Lindsay are both available after sitting out the mid-week Mid-Ulster Cup match, both having been sent off in last weekend’s game at Dungannon Swifts.

Paddy McCourt played the full 90 minutes in Tuesday’s Mid-Ulster Cup quarter final against Newry City AFC, scoring his first Glenavon goal in a 4-0 win, as he continues to build up his match fitness. Long-term injury duo James Singleton and Kyle Neill also started the game though Neill had to come off after half an hour as a precaution when he felt a tight calf. Simon Kelly is a doubt but David Elebert is available again after missing last Saturday’s game because of a family wedding.

Anyone who can’t make Saturday’s game at the Showgrounds will wish to note that the final game of the Under-17 European mini-tournament takes place at MVP, kick off  3.00pm, when Northern Ireland entertain San Marino. Admission is free.

Match Officials

Referee Assistant 1 Assistant 2 4th Official
Raymond Hetherington Paul Robinson Adrian Sobieski Ian McNabb