Ballymena United 4
Moyola Park 0
Irish Cup (Round 5)

Ballymena United
4 - 0
Moyola Park 

Irish Cup (Round 5)
Saturday, January 6th, 2018
Ballymena Showgrounds
3:00 PM Kick-off

Kyle Owens (13)
Matthew Shevlin (28)
Tony Kane (51)
Matthew Shevlin (71)

Team Managers
David Jeffrey
Mervyn Pattinson

Starting Eleven
1. Ross Glendinning
19. Kofi Balmer
21. Jim Ervin
2. Tony Kane
22. Steven McCullough
4. Kyle Owens
8. Stephen McAlorum
24. Francis McCaffrey
11. Conor McCloskey
10. Kevin Braniff
16. Matthew Shevlin
Marcin Farniok .1
Aaron Harris .2
Peter McClure .3
Steven McQuillan .4
Nicky Hudson .5
David Graham .6
Conor Taggart .7
Oran McAuley .8
Tiarnan Rafferty .9
Tomas McCann .10
Ryan Young .11

18. Conor Brennan
25. Caolan Loughran
43. Lee McCune
51. Ciaran Dobbin
12. William Faulkner
26. Joseph McKinney
28. Jake McNeill
Stuart Forrest .12
Conor McNamee .13
Hugh Og Boyle .14
Kyle Robinson .15
Joshua Evans .16
Daniel McIlhatton .17

Caolan Loughran for Kyle Owens (72)
Lee McCune for Steven McCullough (85)
Ciaran Dobbin for Conor McCloskey (85)
Hugh Og Boyle for Peter McClure (46)
Daniel McIlhatton for Conor Taggart (46)
Stuart Forrest for Ryan Young (70)

None. None.

Red Cards
None. None.
Match Officials

Ian McNabb (Referee)
Richard Scott & Lee McMahon (Assistants)

Match Report

Ballymena United are safely through to the sixth round of the Tennent's Irish Cup after a 4-0 home win over Moyola Park.

The visitors, 4th in the Premier Intermediate League, almost took a shock lead just 4 minutes in. Full back Aaron Harris played in Ryan Young and from an angle the winger rattled the underside of the crossbar. 5 minutes later Ballymena had the ball in the back of the net as Fra McCaffrey turned home a Conor McCloskey cross, but it was cancelled out for offside.

On 13 minutes The Sky Blues took the lead. A corner from Tony Kane evaded everyone at the front post and found Kyle Owens who stabbed the ball home from close range to keep up his impressive recent goal scoring record.

After the early scare at the other end, Ballymena started to control the play and went close to making it 2 when a fantastic back heel from Matthew Shevlin set up McCloskey, but he sliced his shot just wide. With 28 minutes gone United doubled their lead. McCaffrey slid a pass into the path of Owens and the defender's nice touch set up Matthew Shevlin who buried the ball low past Marcin Farniok to give Ballymena a 2-0 lead.

Despite seeing little of the ball, Moyola were holding their own when they did have it and Nicky Hudson found Tiarnan Rafferty unmarked on the edge of the box, but his shot was easily gathered by Ross Glendinning. A corner from Kane made its way into the back of the net thanks to an error from Farniok on 36 minutes, but the goal was ruled out for a push on the 'keeper. A couple of minutes later Farniok pulled off a terrific triple save to keep Moyola within 2. A shot from Kevin Braniff from 12 yards out was parried out by Farniok to Jim Ervin, whose rebound was again saved by the 'keeper but only as far as Shevlin, but again Farniok saved well.

In the next attack Shevlin produced a nice turn and shot inside the box, but again Farniok was on hand to deny the forward. With 5 minutes left in the half Glendinning was forced into making a good save to stop Rafferty. Tomas McCann picked up on a mistake from Owens and played in Rafferty, with Glendinning tipping his curling effort around the post as Ballymena took a 2-0 lead into the break.

It took 5 minutes into the second half for either goalkeeper to have to make a save. A half volley from distance via Kane's boot was at a comfortable height for Farniok to make a simple catch. However on 51 minutes Kane wouldn't be denied as he made it 3-0 to the Braidmen. Farniok dealt poorly with a through ball, parrying it outside of his box before a poor clearance which fell to Tony Kane. The midfielder still had work to do but from at least 40 yards he directed the ball beautifully into the empty goal.

The second half was even more one sided than the first and Steven McCullough almost made it 4 when he was played in by a neat Braniff flick, but his effort agonisingly bypassed the far post. Whilst McCullough could've made it 4, Braniff should've shortly after. McCaffrey burst through only to see his attempt saved, the rebound fell to Shevlin but his shot was blocked, only into the path of Braniff but from just outside the 6 yard box he sent the ball wide of the post. On the hour mark Ballymena made it a hat trick of disallowed goals when Shevlin turned in a McCloskey cross from close range, but it was chalked off for an apparent foul in the build up.

Moyola were restricted to a couple of long range attempts which sailed over the bar and with 18 minutes left United found a 4th. Braniff intercepted a weak back pass from Hudson and after seeing his shot saved, Matthew Shevlin was there to place the rebound past Farniok for his 2nd of the afternoon.

Braniff almost got in on the goal scoring act himself after a nice turn opened up a shooting opportunity, but Farniok got down well to save. Late on David Jeffrey handed debuts to youngsters Ciaran Dobbin and Lee McCune from the bench as United completed a comprehensive win and now face Ballinamallard at home in Round 6.

Match report written by Philip McPeake (

Squad Statistics (as at January 6th, 2018)

2017-2018 All Time
Ross Glendinning (GK)24 21 - 51 -
Kofi Balmer17 12 - 131
Jim Ervin32 29 - 1562
Tony Kane30 25525838
Steven McCullough23 251251
Kyle Owens25 2246811
Stephen McAlorum31 3 - 3 -
Francis McCaffrey24 171396
Conor McCloskey25 2946110
Kevin Braniff34 153256
Matthew Shevlin19 1765011
Caolan Loughran (sub)22 2 - 332
Lee McCune (sub)18 1 - 1 -
Ciaran Dobbin (sub)19 1 - 1 -

League Table (as at January 6th, 2018)

Pld W D L +/- Pts

* - Table split into two divisions of six.