IRISH LEAGUE: Limavady book May Day Final spot

Limavady United player/manager Paul Owens.
Limavady United player/manager Paul Owens.

Limavady United 5-2 Hanover

They got a bit of a scare from Mid Ulster side Hanover but in the end Limavady United’s class shone through in their Intermediate Cup semi-final.

They have set up a cup final date with Linfield Swifts on May Day, after this win despite having gone behind early in the game.

Regan McIlveen had put the junior side ahead only for Paul Owens, Gary McFadden and Joe McCready to seemingly put United through. Neil Cochrane pulled a goal back to give Hanover hope but Declan McKeever and Sean McCarron’s late goals ensured safe passage for the Roesiders.

Player boss Paul Owens was jubilant after the final whistle with his team looking forward to the May Day final.

“I had said in the past few weeks that we were doing it for Bryan but not just him because everyone has played their part,” he said.

“We have been together for two years now; we have won all the cups available to us apart from the Intermediate Cup.

“I’m 34 years old now, this is probably going to be my last chance to win it plus we have the big carrot of playing at Windsor Park.”

Despite the comfortable looking score line Owens felt that the game wasn’t just the way he would have liked it.

“We dominated the game but we were much more wasteful than we normally would be plus our defending at set pieces wasn’t great.

“Credit to Hanover though, they gave it a real go and I think that 5-2 but a little harsh on them at the end.

“However its cup football, it really doesn’t matter how you get through just as long as you do.

“To be honest if you had told this was the way it would have gone before the game I’d have snapped your arm off for it,” he finished.

Hanover took a shock lead in the 7th minute; United failed to clear a ball in from the right with McIlveen on hand to force the ball home with aid of a deflection.

The junior side’s cause wasn’t helped in the 37th minute when Jamie Rooney saw red for a two footed lunge.

On the stroke of half-time the Roesiders were level; Owens firing past Nathan White at the goalkeeper’s near post.

In the 57th minute United hit the front; McFadden firing the ball past White from twenty yards although the keeper should have done better.

McCready added a third in the 74th minute; United broke quickly from the back, Owens inch perfect pass found the striker who clipped the ball over the onrushing keeper.

Four minutes later Hanover had a lifeline when Cochrane headed home from close range after another ball into the box.

United regained their advantage two minutes before the end. McKeever smashing the ball home from twenty five yards.

The icing on the cake came in the final minute when sub Sean McCarron burst past two defenders before firing past White.

Hanover: White, Douglas, Rooney, Cochrane, Taylor, Sergeant, McClelland (Kerr 39), McCullough, Bradley (Lappin 76), McIlveen, Brawn (McKinney 70).

Limavady United: Wells, Murray, McKeever, Carlin, Watt, McFadden, Owens (Thompson 76), C.Harkin, Hume, McCready, McCloskey (McCarron 89).