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Harps miss out on EA Cup semi-final

Derry City 2-1 Finn Harps (after extra-time)

A much improved Finn Harps were unlucky to miss out on a place on the EA Sports Cup semi-final place after an extra-time defeat to Derry City on Monday night. After a 4-0 Premier Division drubbing at the hands of Derry on Friday night, Ollie Horgan’s men were really up for this second game between the two sides in the space of four days at the Ryan McBride Brandywell Stadium. David Parkhouse who scored twice against Harps in the league game at Finn Park back in April spoiled the party again, getting an 83rd minute equaliser after Nathan Boyle had given the visitors the lead.

Parkhouse got the winner three minutes into the first period of extra-time. Credit to Harps who didn’t throw in the towel and three times came close to an equaliser and they ended the match with ten men when substitute Mark Coyle was sent off for a second yellow card. Both sides fielded strong sides with Mark Anthony McGinley coming into goals for the first time since signing for Harps. Niall Logue was recalled and young Stephen Doherty got a start in midfield. He had scored the winner in the first round win over Sligo Rovers in Ballybofey last month. Horgan also included attacking players Nathan Boyle, Mikey Place and another youngster Liam Walsh.

Referee John McLaughlin dismissed early shouts from the visitors for a penalty.  Ciaron Harkin who was the hat-trick hero for the Candystripes on Friday and Jamie McDonagh had shots that didn’t trouble McGinley. However, McGinley did make a good stop from Harkin just before the break.  Bruna came close from a Derry free-kick early in the second half.  Harps went in front on 55 minutes when right-full-back Colm Deasy did well to setup Nathan Boyle who shot past Nathan Gartside

The equaliser came in the 83rd minute when Ciaran Coll crossed for Parkhouse to steer the ball past McGinley. Just three minutes into the first period of extra-time Parkhouse popped up again, nipping in ahead of McGinley to find the back of the net for what proved to be the winner. Horgan’s men poured forward in search of an equaliser and came close three times. Gartside fumbled a ball and forced Harkin to make a goal line clearance. Former Harps player Coll had do likewise from the next Harps attack and then sub Mark Coyle had a shot blocked on the line and bounced off the crossbar before the break in the first period of extra-time. Coyle was dismissed in the final two minutes for a second yellow card offence.

Derry City - Nathan Gartside, Jamie McDonagh, Ciaran Coll (Jack Malone 108), Ally Gilchrist, Josh Kerr (Conor McDermott 116), Ciaron Harkin, Gerardo Bruna, Aidy Delap (Gianni Serrai 81) David Parkhouse, Barry McNamee, Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe.

Finn Harps: Mark Anthony McGinley, Colm Deasy, Daniel O’Reilly, Keith Cowan (Mark Russell 119), Sam Todd, Niall Logue, Caolan McAleer, Stephen Doherty (Tony McNamee 90), Liam Walsh (Raf Cretaro 87), Nathan Boyle (Mark Coyle 60), Mikey Place. Not used: Ryan Finn, Darragh Ellison, Peter Burke (Gk).

Referee: John McLaughlin