Red card turning point for Annagh

Dean Smith.
Dean Smith.

Annagh’s run in the Intermediate Cup ended with a home defeat to Cliftonville Olympic on Saturday.

The turning point in the game came on the hour mark when Dean Smith’s side were reduced to ten men after Johnny Grant saw red.

The first half was scoreless altough Annagh never really managed to create anything of note in the box.

After the red card Cliftonville took advantage and grabbed the opening goal.

Annagh well out out to try and find an equaliser and in the end were caught on the counter attack with the last kick of the ball.

It was not a performance which pleased manager Dean Smith.

“It was perhaps out worst display of the season,” said Dean. “We lacked pace and urgency and it was one of days we never got going at all.

“The sending off changed the game. We had to try and press and even more so after they scored. Taking nothing away from Cliftonville, they deserved the win, but we got what we deserved.”

Annagh will have to raise their game as they take on Dollingstown at home on Saturday.

“They may have surprised a few teams with the way they have come up and settled well in this division, but I knew they would cope well. They are a good side with good players and they are well equipped for this level, or even higher.

“Both sets of players know each other and I know their manager Gary Duke who is doing a sound job there.

“We know it will not be easy, but if we play the way I know we can then we will get the win. You have to have self belief and be positive. We have shown we can play, but we just lack that all important ingredient at the minute which is consistency.

“That is how you win leagues. We have a good bunch of players here who listen and are willing to learn. Saturday will be a real test and everyone is looking forward to the match.”