Dollingstown Promoted To The Bluefin Sport Premier Intermediate League


The NI Football League have been notified that Glebe Rangers have withdrawn from the playoffs for the Bluefin Sport Premier Intermediate League.

The Ballymoney based side were crowned champions of the Ballymena & Provincial Intermediate League on Monday night and were due to participate in a two legged playoff against Dollingstown, with the first leg this Friday 25 May.

As a result of the withdrawl, Mid-Ulster Intermediate League winners Dollingstown will automatically be promoted take the vacant place in the 2018/2019 Bluefin Sport Premier Intermediate League.

In a statement issued by Glebe Rangers on Wednesday; “Following consultation with all Club members, Glebe Rangers FC have decided not to proceed this season with their opportunity to participate in play offs for a place in the Premier Intermediate League.”

Club Spokesman John McAuley added, “This is not a decision which has been taken lightly and is simply down to the financial requirements of playing in the PIL.”

“It would cost an additional 50% to make the step up and as a result of the current economic climate, the club have failed to secure the required backing from a number of potential sponsors.”

“We will continue to work hard behind the scenes in the hope of overcoming this issue to avoid the same situation in the future as the Clubs ambitions are still to play at the highest level possible within our capabilities.”

“On behalf of the club, I would like to wish Dollingstown all the best in the Premier Intermediate League next season.”

***Annual General Meeting***

Dollingstown Football Club will be holding the clubs Annual General Meeting on Monday 4th June 2018 down at Planters Park and it will start at 8pm Sharp.

We would like all 1st team players to be down at Planters Park at 7pm as we will be taking the official club photographs with the Intermediate A Trophy and the Marshall Cup. Your welcome to bring down family members etc for individual photos if you would like them.

Bluefin Sports Premier Intermediate League Play-Off

Glebe Rangers 1-0 win over St. James Swifts on Monday 21st May 2018 confirmed them as league champions meaning Dollingstown and Glebe Rangers will contest a two-legged play-off to see who will return the Irish senior football after both teams were relegated in the re-shuffle a few years ago.

Both teams have had a fantastic season and what a two games we have ahead:

1st Leg     –     Friday 25 May 2018     –     Dollingstown v Glebe Rangers     –     7.00pm

2nd Leg     –     Tuesday, 29 May 2018     –     Glebe Rangers v Dollingstown     –     7.00pm

If the two teams involved in the play-off score the same number of goals over the two legs, the team which scores more away goals will be declared the winner.

If at the end of the second match of the play-off the scores are equal, and neither team has scored more away goals, then that game will be played to a finish by the playing of extra time of 10 minutes each way (away goals will not count double) and by the taking of penalty kicks if necessary.

Its Double Delight For The Dollybirds In Goal Fest Marshall Cup Final

On a beautiful sunny evening the crowd were fully compensated for their entry fee by a great game of football with 9 goals shared between the two finalists in the Marshall Cup.

Crewe United came into the game as both holders of the cup and the only team to defeat DFC in the league way back to last August but it was DFC who were quickest out of the blocks and Aaron Duke opened the scoring on 3 minutes with a composed finish after a great through ball from Andy McMath.

Glenn Hand then almost doubled the lead on 9 minutes when he beat the keeper but headed wide of the open goal and Richy Thompson should have scored when after a great run down the left he tried to round the keeper but keeper saved.

On the quarter-hour mark it was Thompson who did double the lead after Duke headed on a long ball and he fired into the roof of the net to continue his remarkable late scoring run.

However Crewe then caught out DFC with poor defending as Matty Walker failed to clear a long ball from the keeper and McCullough beat Stephen Croft from inside the area but again DFC responded in positive fashion with a superb team goal . Thompson played in Ryan Gourley whose cross was sublimely volleyed in by McMath who has enjoyed a fine first season with the club.

Then the deadly Duke – Thompson combination worked once again with Thompson showing great composure to chip the keeper for number 4 and indeed DFC should have scored more in a dominant first half before conceding right on the interval when Smith calmly drove home from a penalty.

In the second half credit to Crewe they were the dominant team and the balance was upset when Gourley was taken off injured after losing 2 teeth and replaced by Stephen Jones and couple of minutes later it was 4-3 when Crewe scored from a long throw in.

Thompson was denied a blatant penalty when he was pulled down by the keeper as DFC were fighting to retain the lead but not to be denied he won a penalty on 80 minutes when pulled back by the full back and Duke calmly stepped up to score the 5th goal for the club.

Crewe were not finished however and literally a minute later pegged it back to 5-4 after poor defending to set up a nervy last few minutes but DFC held out to complete league and cup double yet again.

This has been a tremendous season for the club after many months of hard work put in by the players and management team with total dedication and focus.

Now the biggest challenge of all appears in the coming 10 days with a play off yet again for senior football against either Glebe Rangers or Bangor with dates confirmed or Friday 25th and Tuesday 29th May, with fully details announced tonight by the NIFL.

Dollybirds Brought Down To Earth Before Cup Final Showdown

DFC made the long journey in final league game to Valley Rangers as per same fixture last season but this time it was Valley Rangers who reversed the score line with a very comfortable 6- 0 victory.

Valley went in front on 3 minutes and doubled the score line on 20 minutes as DFC were off the pace of the game completely having made 8 changes from Saturday with the Marshall Cup Final in mind on Friday night.

On the half hour mark it was game over with valley 3-0 up and casting and at half time Ryan Gourley replaced Nathan McConnell.

On the hour mark it was 4-0 before Andy McMath rattled the cross bar a minute later but that was as good as it got before Valley scored 2 more late on.

Jake Redpath replaced Davy Gray in the final few minutes as he was suffering from cramp.

Dollingstown Crowned Champions Of Intermediate A And Gain Play-Off Spot

On a glorious sunny afternoon at their final home league game of a long hard season DFC grabbed all 3 points required to once again retain the league championship and coincidentally against the same opposition as last season namely Fivemiletown United.

Richy Thompson settled the nerves early on the quarter-hour mark when he fired low into the bottom corner after yet another assist from Aaron Duke like last week and on 20 minutes it was the same combination yet again and on 36 minutes yet again the same combination with Thompson rifling the ball into the roof of the net for his hat trick like last week.

Ryan Gourley then made it 4-0 at the break when he rounded the keeper to tap home and the one way traffic continued after the break when Glenn Hand was brought down in the area and the normally reliable Duke struck the bar with the resultant penalty.

Matthew Walker and Michael Ferguson were then replaced by Stephen Jones and Marc Davidson before that man Thompson scored his successive 4th goal in last two games when he chipped the keeper after being put through by Gourley.

Duke then finally got on the score sheet himself with a trade mark back post header before Hand was replaced by Nathan Lavery who was then fouled in the area and McConnell this time took the kick but the keeper saved well.

Thompson then turned provider for Duke to head home goal number 7 on the day as DFC were then presented with the league championship for the second year in a row and now face a very tough two-legged play off against either Bangor or Glebe Rangers from the Ballymena league in couple of weeks time.

In between on Friday night is the small matter of the Marshall Cup Final in Banbridge against the holders Crewe United the only team to defeat DFC this season in a very tough league campaign.

Well done to Scobie , his management team and all the players who have contributed to this team success.

Richy Rockets The Dollybirds Into The Marshall Cup Final After 4 Goal Haul

In glorious sunshine DFC easily overcame their nearest challengers for league honors with a convincing 4-0 win in their semi final battle of the Marshall Cup with Richard Thompson shining most brightly of all with all 4 goals.

Aaron Duke headed on a long ball from  Matty Walker and Thompson capitalised to open the scoring on 12 minutes and had a great chance two minutes later but his shot was deflected for a corner.

However on the quarter-hour mark he doubled the lead after a wonderful through ball from Duke and he calmly rounded the keeper to stroke the ball into the empty net and he completed his hat trick right on the half time whistle when he lobbed the keeper after another assist from Duke.

The second half failed to reach the tempo of the first half in the heat and manager Stephen Uprichard replaced Andy McMath , Glenn Hand and Josh Norton with Stephen Jones , Cathel DeBrun and Chris Coleman before that man Thompson went on to score his fourth of the match with a powerful right footed shot from the edge of the area after yet another inter change with his strike partner Duke.

Next Saturday DFC have their final home league fixture of the season when they host Fivemiletown United who themselves only last week defeated Banbridge Rangers to set up a title decider for the dollybirds.

Dollingstown will play Crewe United in the Final of The Marshall Cup after their comfortable 5-0 win over a spirited Newry City Reserves.