Manchester United picked up a hard fought victory over County Fermanagh in a thrilling Supercup NI match at the Ballymena Showgrounds on Tuesday night.
Manchester United created the first chance of the game as Anthony Elanga beat the offside trap inside two minutes and he has his shot well kept out by Nathan Copeland in the County Fermanagh goal.
It was all one-way traffic as Neil Ryan’s side were chasing an opener and they nearly had just that inside eight minutes when Ademipo Odubeko left the County Fermanagh defence for dead only to once again find Copeland in fine form as he palmed away a powerful low effort.
Odubeko and Elanga were linking up superbly for the Red Devils and they created the next opening as Elanga fizzed a low shot across the face of goal after the powerful Odubeko had played a defence splitting pass.
However on twenty minutes the goal did come for Manchester United as Odubeko who has played football in Ireland before with St Joseph’s boys in Dublin and he slotted the ball into the bottom corner of the net past the despairing dive of Copeland.
One could have become two three minutes later as Shola Shoretire whistled a freekick just over the bar from just outside the box.
Maymona thought he had scored a second for the Red Devils as he cut through the County Fermanagh defence like a knife through butter but saw his effort kept out by the impressive Copeland.
County Fermanagh were then to grab an equaliser before halftime as Eimhin Curran took advantage of a loose ball after United keeper Ondrej Mastny had failed to hold a powerful whipped in Darragh Byrne freekick from twenty-five yards out.
It was Manchester United who came out of the blocks the quicker in the second half and could have gone ahead immediately when Odubeko was played through on goal by Hayden Smethurst but he was denied a certain goal by a last-ditch block from Rory Burns.
However a goal wasn’t far away for Ryan’s side as Odubeko who was putting in a stunning performance latched onto a George Ray Wyatt through ball to plant his effort into the back of the net to the delight of a big crowd at the Ballymena Showgrounds.
County Fermanagh were not going to give up and they were to be level two minutes later through Curran who grabbed his second of the game as he was in the right place at the right time after Mastny miscued his clearance the ball fell perfectly to the striker and he really couldn’t miss placing the ball into an empty net.
United were playing some eye-catching football and they should have had their third on fifty-three minutes as Ben Pleavin played in Mayamona before he flicked his effort over the crossbar from six yards out. County Fermanagh could have gone ahead as Curran was denied his hat-trick when he rounded Mastny but cracked his effort off the inside of the post before Samuel Peplow cleared the ball off the line.
A minute after Odubeko was then once again celebrating as he made it three when he rose highest from a Elanga corner to power his header past the despairing dive of Copeland.
Credit, Joshua Bunting @Distillerymad