Crusaders today saw off Glentoran 4-1in the Tennents Irish Cup 5th Round with a superior second half display after being level at half time. Both Gerard Doherty and Rory Hale made their debuts for Crusaders while Reece McGinley came on from the bench in a game that Crusaders controlled for large amounts.
Glentoran did start brightly but Crusaders defence held their own and Doherty in goals had little to do. Crusaders where the first to go close on 15 minutes when Jordan Owens rose high but his header went inches over while a second chance soon after went wide. Glentorans Curtis Allen then volleyed well over from a decent position on 23 minutes. Glentoran lost Herron to a facial injury as the game opened up with Glentoran going close when Darren Murray flicked the ball wide after a Crusaders defensive mix up on 36 minutes. The game went into a quiet mode from here to half time but it was Rory Hale who shone in the final minutes of the half with two good defensive moves that kept the score 0-0 on the whistle.
The second half was a much better affair and Elliott Morris was quick to get down and save Jordan Owens shot early on. Jordan Owens was on hand to make an important block for Crusaders defensively and within a minute Crusaders went ahead. A good build up saw Ross Clarke cross perfectly and Paul Heatley headed home unmarked on 53 minutes. The lead did not last long as Glentoran hit back just two minutes later when Glentoran debutant Lukasz Gwiazda headed a Curtis Allen shot that was going wide into the net. Crusaders came straight back again and Morris just got his fingers to a cross with Heatley ready to pounce before Lowrys shot was blocked and Ross Clarke was unlucky with a good turn and shot that was blocked. Crusaders went ahead on 68 minutes through Paul Heatley again. Jordan Forsythes hooked ball was brilliantly controlled and the shot flew past Morris to make it 2-1. It was all the home side now and Owens shot well over and Morris did well to catch sub David Cushleys curler. Another Jordan Owens header was deflected for a corner and from it he made it 3-1. The corner came in and Glentorans defence failed to deal with it and Jordan himself was on hand at the back post to poke the ball home on 75 minutes. 3-1 and coasting Glentoran could not raise their game again and looked defeated and their misery was made worse when Matthew Snoddy made it 4-1 on the whistle when he latched on to a poor defensive back pass and slotted the ball home through Elliott Morris legs and that was that.
So safely through to the 6th Round with a great display and a good showing from all three new boys. Attention now turns to the Danske Bank Premiership again next Friday night against Newry City at the Showgrounds.