Lurgan Town U11 Lisburn League sides’ unbeaten start to the season was finally ended today by a Portadown team who were simply more determined to succeed on the day. With some Lurgan Town players missing the starting lineup had a slightly less familiar look to it but they started brightly enough with William Bleakes feeding Jesse Turner in the box, the keeper saving bravely at Jesse’s feet. Portadown lost no time in getting themselves on the score sheet, pressure from midfield allowing their striker to volley into the Lurgan goal. Portadown had their tails up and produced some good saves from Aaron Kerr in goal. Lurgan began to apply themselves with Matthew Hughes’ wing play feeding Jesse in the box, but the Portadown keeper made a strong challenge to snuff out the danger. Lurgan were quick to regain possession with Daryl Houston and William always dangerous on the wings. Excellent football by Adam Furphy at the back allowed Lurgan to force Portadown back towards their goal, but their defence was strong and the danger passed. Lukas Moles and Christopher Heasley were playing their usual composed and dangerous game in midfield, creating a number of chances, but Lurgan simply couldn’t convert. Portadown began to impose themselves more and more on the game, often denying Lurgan space or time on the ball, and good wing play saw a top class cross into the area which was dispatched. To their credit Lurgan applied pressure of their own and a penalty area scramble saw Portadown clear and remain in the lead at the break.
After the re-start Lurgan came out more determined but Portadown matched them tackle for tackle. Lurgan battled well but the breaks simply wouldn’t fall for them today. Christopher and Lukas were always dangerous on the ball but Portadown did their utmost to prevent them creating opportunities. From a Portadown corner Aaron cleared the ball well up field, Jesse latched on to it and ran clear of the defence but saw his shot saved by the keeper. Portadown pressure saw an excellent through ball to their forward who struck firmly on target – Aaron got his hand to the shot but couldn’t keep it out of the goal, injuring himself in the process. Josh willingly took his place and acquitted himself well, saving shots on a number of occasions. A well worked move by Lurgan saw William shoot, forcing a corner, but the ball simply would not fall to a Lurgan Town player. Portadown were determined that Lurgan would not score and were firm in defence. As time began to run out, Lurgan forced a free kick with Christopher shooting just wide. Portadown forced a corner which Josh punched clear and in a sweeping end to end move Jesse went close. Further Lurgan pressure saw Daryl shoot just wide but no consolation score was possible today. Portadown were simply hungrier for the win today, but Lurgan will put today’s disappointment behind them and look forward to their next game with determination.