Larne remain second after Newry draw

Larne FC remain second in the Danske Bank Irish Premiership standings following their 0-0 draw away to Newry City on Sunday.

The visitors created the majority of chances during the clash, but were unable to find the net.

The draw keeps Larne in second place, three points behind Cliftonville, although the Belfast side have played a game more.

Speaking to the club’s media team, manager Tiernan Lynch said: “I didn’t think there was too much wrong with the performance. I just thought that it was a very frustrating game that we didn’t convert the chances that we created.

Newry 'keeper Steven Maguire makes a save. (Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press).
Newry 'keeper Steven Maguire makes a save. (Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press).
Newry 'keeper Steven Maguire makes a save. (Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press).

"I thought it was a very dominant performace. It’s very hard to be critical of the players’ hard work, effort, endeavour, commitment and all that goes with it, but we’ve got to take our chances.

"It’s great to keep clean sheets, but you have to score the goals. The players know that. They’re disappointed.

"There probably would’ve been times in the past when you’d gone to Newry, played in difficult conditions and been glad to go up the road with a point. But we’re different and we’ve to do more.”

Larne welcome Linfield to Inver Park for their sixth round Irish Cup clash on Saturday (3pm).

Lynch added: “I’m expecting a tough game. It’s two good teams and we’ve had a lot of good encounters over the years and I don’t expect anything different come Saturday.”

Larne’s east Antrim neighbours Carrick Rangers conceded a late equaliser against Glenavon on Saturday to draw 1-1 at Taylor’s Avenue.

Kyle Cherry was sent off for Carrick after nine minutes, receiving a straight red for a challenge on Robert Garrett.

Both teams went in at the break with 10 men after Jack Malone also received a red for a similar foul on Kurtis Forsythe in the same area of the pitch with just over five minutes of the first half to play.

Calum Birney deflected the ball into his own net to put the home side 1-0 up with 20 minutes left to play, but Danny Wallace rescued a point for the Lurgan Blues when he scored on 88 minutes.

Speaking to the club’s media team, assistant manager Scott Irvine said: “Everyone in that changing room is hurting. We’ve dominated the game. We’ve had enough chances to win two games. To concede with two minutes to go, in the manner we did, when we’ve been so resolute with our defending, it’s just gutting. Gilt-edged chances, we’ve to take them and if we do, we’re going up the road comfortable, but that’s football.

"From Boxing Day we’ve been outstanding, bar the Crusaders game when we were bare-bones. The players are giving every single drop. We just need the ball to go into the back of the net at times.”

Carrick return to competitive action on February 10 (8pm) when they travel to Newry in the league.

Meanwhile, Ballyclare Comrades lost 2-1 at home to basement side Knockbreda in the Lough 41 NIFL Championship on Saturday.

Anto Burns opened the scoring for the visitors from the spot on 13 minutes.

‘Breda doubled their advantage on 56 minutes when Ballyclare defender Caomhan McGuinness turned the ball into his own net.

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Larne keep pressure on leaders Cliftonville with 'professional' win

Gary Donnelly pulled one back for Ballyclare with five minutes remaining, but Knockbreda held on for all three points.