Glens Curtis Allen orders a double at the Oval

Glentoran's Jim O'Hanlon and Warrenpoint's Stephen McCabe
Glentoran's Jim O'Hanlon and Warrenpoint's Stephen McCabe

Glentoran 3

Warrenpoint 1

Glentoran bounced back from their midweek home defeat to Linfield by taking all three points against Warrenpoint Town at The Oval courtesy of a Curtis Allen double.

Eddie Patterson’s men did go behind to a clever Stephen Hughes header in the first half but by the time they had got to the break, the East Belfast men were 2-1 in front after a super finish from Allen before the striker set up Fra McCaffrey for the second.

A tepid second half only began to spring to life in the latter stages when Warrenpoint had a number of opportunities to level before Allen sealed the win in the penultimate minute of normal to cap a fine personal performance.

The first clear-cut chance arrived on 18 minutes when ‘Point keeper Jonny Parr produced a superb save to deny Kym Nelson from a downward header before Nelson blasted the rebound wide.

Warrenpoint then took the lead completely against the run of play on 21 minutes. They won a corner on the left and when the ball was whipped in by Stephen McDonnell, Stephen Hughes got in front of his man to glance a near post header past the helpless Chris Keenan.

However, it was still all Glentoran and ten minutes later they deservedly drew level when Curtis Allen beat the offside trap and spotted Parr advancing off his line to cleverly lob the keeper from 22 yards for the equaliser.

They really should have gone in front two minutes later when Fra McCaffrey did well on the left flank to whip in an inch-perfect cross to the back post where David Howland was coming steaming in. However, the Glens captain somehow contrived to volley the ball wide from only a couple of yards out.

McCaffrey himself then missed the chance to make it 2-1 eight minutes before the break when he shot into the ground and wide but it didn’t take long for the Glens to go in front though and it was Warrenpoint’s tormentor-in-chief Allen who was at the heart of the move.

He beat the Town offside trap to race through on goal and although he would have been entitled to go for goal himself, he unselfishly squared it to McCaffrey who had the simplest of tasks to sidefoot home from six yards.

The second period was a pretty aimless affair early on before Warenpoint’s Stephen McCabe tested Keenan twice with left footed shots inside 60 seconds, the second of which saw the Glens keeper produce a stunning one handed save to deny the midfielder from grabbing the leveller on 74 minutes. Glentoran then nearly sealed the win a minute later when sub Jordan Stewart crossed low across the six-yard box but Allen, on the stretch, poked it over the bar.

The visitors came within inches of levelling it with just six minutes left when Stephen McDonnell’s 25-yard thunderbolt had Keenan beaten all ends up only to crash off the crossbar as Warrenpoint threatened.

However, they were finally killed off on 89 minutes when Allen’s low drive from the edge of the area took a nick off a defender to find the bottom right corner of the net and secured the victory.

Glentoran: Keenan, Henderson, Kane (McCullough 60), Magee, Holland, Howland (McAlorum 60), Nelson, O’Hanlon (Stewart 68), Allen, McCaffrey, Scullion

Subs not used: Miskimmin, Garrett, Stewart

Warrenpoint Town: Parr, King, McDonnell, McVeigh, S Hughes, McCabe, Bagnall, M Hughes, Moan (Grant 67), Boyle, Devlin

Subs not used: Cowan, Gargan, Smith, Havern

Referee: Ian McNabb (Enniskillen)