Honours even at The Oval as Ports and Glens draw blank

Robert Garrett up against Glentoran's Ross Redman. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Robert Garrett up against Glentoran's Ross Redman. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Manager Gary Haveron and Vinny Arkins entered this 0-0 draw having experienced contrasting fortunes leading up to the game - and left it with opposing views of how the stalemate played out.

Haveron’s form since taking over at Glentoran secured plaudits including the Northern Ireland Football Writers’ Manager of the Month award for October. Arkins, the Ports’ interim boss, had to prepare his side under the cloud of a suspension row regarding Robert Garrett that resulted in a 3-0 win awarded to Ards.

Despite the gap between highs and lows in the two camps, little divided the sides on the pitch.

Curtis Allen’s early volley flashed wide and the striker had a second-half goal ruled out for the home side. Matthew Parker delivered a superb cross which almost led to an own goal against his former club by Glentoran’s Ross Redman, then the Ports man was on hand to block an Aaron Harmon close-range effort.

“We’ve totally dominated the game more or less from start to finish,” said Haveron. “We’ve put countless balls into the box but didn’t ask enough questions.

“We felt the goal was a good goal and had two good penalty decisions go against us.”

Arkins praised his players for limiting the hosts’ cutting edge.

“The lads worked hard and that is the basis of a team coming together,” said Arkins. “We have to be happy with the point.

“I was glad to see Curtis Allen going out wide to receive the ball as it suited us.”