Annagh wrap up crown in style with free-scoring home victory

Annagh United celebrate winning the MUFL Reserve Championship title on Saturday at Tandragee Road. Pic by Phil Ray

Annagh United celebrate winning the MUFL Reserve Championship title on Saturday at Tandragee Road. Pic by Phil Ray

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Three seasons of progress culminated on Saturday in seven goals across 90 minutes of football to secure Annagh United the MUFL Reserve Championship title.

Under the guidance of Paul Matchett, Annagh entered the Mid-Ulster campaign having clocked up final placings of third then second the previous two seasons.

A weekend defeat of Ballymacash Rangers by 7-0 at Tandragee Road pushed Annagh on to the magic 50-point mark thanks to 16 wins from the 22-game programme.

“We have been building this squad over the past few seasons in terms of getting the balance between youth and experience,” said Matchett. “People like Ciaran McGurgan and Raymond Harpur have been connected to this club from childhood, then bringing back more experienced players to the club such as Simon Haffey and Johnny McAdam added to the group.

“We work hard at youth development, with players coming up from John McDowell’s under 19s, plus we enjoy brilliant support from the first-team management panel and the club committee.

“We signed Regan McIlveen from Portadown, Nathan Thompson joined us from Dungannon Swifts and Scott Herron was previously with Loughgall.

“Those young players came on board with experience from Irish League clubs, plus Willie Herron played a big role as coach.

“There is great integration between all the teams and our run of league form after Christmas proves the team spirit around the club.

“Congratulations ultimately go the players.”

The Annagh United winners were as follows from Saturday’s awards: Shea Campbell (firsts’ Leading Goalscorer and Player Of The Year), Steven Park (firsts’ Players’ Player Of The Year), Jordan Campbell (Young Player Of The Year), Noel Walker (Clubman Of The Year), Raymond Harpur (reserves’ Leading Goalscorer and Players’ Player Of The Year), Ryan Coulter (reserves’ Player Of The Year), Matthew Marsden (under 19s’ Player Of The Year), Josh Mathers (under 19s’ Clubman Of The Year), Fra Duggan (under 19s’ Leading Goalscorer).