IRISH LEAGUE: Portadown wrap up week to forget with league loss by Coleraine

Portadown's Mark Carson, left, and Garry Breen 'and Coleraine's Darren McCauley
Portadown's Mark Carson, left, and Garry Breen 'and Coleraine's Darren McCauley

Vinny Arkins’ playing days in a Portadown shirt featured plenty of points and prizes - but he was unable to transfer that golden touch into a first match as interim manager.

Arkins only stepped into the Shamrock Park hot-seat the night before the evening defeat to Coleraine by 1-0.

Pat McGibbon’s shock resignation the day before the Danske Bank Premiership match marked another blow in a week to forget for the Ports following a damning Irish Football Association ruling.

The IFA verdict confirmed a 12-point deduction and 3-0 win awarded to Coleraine relating to a fixture scheduled for the opening day of the season.

Coleraine enjoyed a smaller margin of victory but left town on top thanks to Brad Lyons’ excellent first-half finish.

Lyons and Jamie McGonigle formed a slick attack for the visitors - with the latter close on a number of occasions to finding the net, with goalkeeper Chris McGaughey producing one smart full-stretch stop to frustrate the forward.

McGaughey was also alert to collect attempts by Lyons and Rodney Brown as Coleraine held the upper hand in the first half.

Portadown had Aaron Haire as an ever-willing option up top and the summer arrival was prevented from a spot on the scoresheet by Coleraine’s Chris Johns on two occasions inside a matter of moments, with Matthew Parker also having an attempt stopped on the line.

The Ports increased the pressure after the break but the most promising second-half shot ended with McGonigle’s drive pushed on to the post by McGaughey.

However, Ken Oman - pushed into attack from defence - had a last-gasp effort hit the side of the net for the Ports.

The final whistle was met by warm applause in recognition of the players’ efforts - but chants against the directors from a section of the home support.

PORTADOWN: Chris McGaughey, Mark Carson, Ken Oman, Garry Breen, Adam Rodgers, Stephen Hughes, Robert Garrett, Niall Henderson, Matthew Parker, Aaron Haire, Eoin Kirwan. Subs: Conor Larkin, Nathaniel Ferris (Kirwan, 78), Matthew Rooney (Rodgers, 72), Zac Wilson (Henderson, 85), Alan Byrne.

COLERAINE: Chris Johns, Adam Mullan, Steven Douglas, Darren McCauley, Neil McCafferty, Rodney Brown, David Kee, Gareth McConaghie, Brad Lyons, Ian Parkhill, Jamie McGonigle. Subs: Ruaidhri Higgins (McCafferty, 85), David Ogilby (McConaghie, 92), Sammy Morrow, Jordan Allan (Lyons, 64), Ryan Whiteside.

Referee: Andrew Davey.