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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 March, 2005, 19:30 GMT
Glentoran 2-1 Longford Town
Stephen Parkhouse
Stephen Parkhouse was on target for Glentoran at the Oval
Goals from Michael Halliday and Stephen Parkhouse helped Glentoran get their Setanta Cup campaign off to a winning start against Longford Town.

All the goals came after half-time with Halliday's superb looping shot in the 50th minute followed by Parkhouse's clever 64th minute finish.

Substitute Paul Keegan pulled a goal back for Longford on 82 minutes.

Shane Barrett missed a glorious first half chance for Longford while Kevin Keegan also went close for the Glens.

Keegan's second minute chance for the Glens was superbly blocked by Longford goalkeeper Stephen O'Brien.

Longford then took a measure of control and Barrett's great chance came in the 19th minute but with only Elliott Morris to beat, he hit the side-netting.

The excellent Gavin Melaugh then went close for Glentoran in the 27th minute with a left-foot drive from outside the area.

Halliday hammered Glentoran into the lead five minutes after half-time with a glorious shot past O'Brien after the Longford defence had failed to clear from the edge of their penalty area.

Longford were almost on terms within a minute later but Morris made a fine save to deny former Portadown player Dean Fitzgerald.

As the lively start to the second half continued, Sean Prunty got in behind the Glentoran defence but he fired wildly over the top.

Michael Halliday
Michael Halliday scored a superb opener for Glentoran

It was then the turn of Kevin Keegan to get into a threatening position but O'Brien was able to grab the Glentoran man's attempted pull-back towards the unmarked Parkhouse.

With both teams finding space in the opposition box, Longford's Alan Kirby created a chance for himself by a clever dummy but he shot high over the bar.

Halliday was inches away from scoring a second Glens goal in the 64th minute after a delightful curling shot.

However seconds later, Parkhouse made it 2-0 for the Glens by producing a clinical finish after he had bustled past two Longford defenders.

As Longford tried frantically to get back into the game, Davy Byrne went close from a free-kick and Alan Kirby then missed an absolute sitter for Longford in the 74th minute and was immediately replaced as part of a double-substitution.

One of the Longford substitutes, Paul Keegan did head a goal back for Longford in the 82nd minute after a fine Sean Dillon cross.

Stephen Parkhouse had a late chance for Glentoran but the ball bobbled and he hit wildly wide.

Longford pressed hard during the three minutes of injury-time and sub Eric Levine nodded over the bar and Paul Keegan then headed a chance straight in the arms of Morris.


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