A 1-1 draw was enough to see Dundalk through to the semi finals of the Setanta Cup at Oriel Park on Monday night.
A second half penalty from Matty Burrows levelled the tie on aggregate but Ross Gaynor tied the scores and edged Dundalk back in front on aggregate when he slotted home on 81 minutes.
It was a tasty opening as after the initial probing the players got down to getting to know each other. Firstly, on eight minutes Jason Hill went over the top on Simon Madden on the right touchline and escaped with a stern talking to. On 12 minutes Madden saw a chance for revenge and flew at Hill but missed his target and Glentoran nearly exploited the vacant space behind the right back with Greg Bolger eventually tidying up.
Glentoran seemed to be happy enough to sit in and draw Dundalk onto them with the intention of breaking the move down and hitting Dundalk on the break through Andrew Waterworth and Burrows.
From the 20th minute to the 35th minute Glentoran barely got out of their own half as Dundalk really turned the screw. However, Glentoran nearly opened the scoring on 34 minutes as Burrows found Grant Gardiner who struck from over 20 yards, the ball deflected into the air off Greg Bolger and was aiming to dip just under the bar when Peter Cherrie stretched every inch of his frame to tip the ball onto the bar and away.
The game changed drastically in five second half minutes as first a penalty was harshly given against Bolger, who was adjudged to have handled a cross into the Dundalk box. Andrew Waterworth stepped forward and skied it over the bar, before a couple of minutes later a second penalty came the Belfast teams way when a long range effort from Daryl Fordyce was spilt by Cherrie, Burrows beat him to the loose ball and went down under the ‘keepers challenge. No mistakes this time as Burrows slotted firmly past Cherrie to level the tie up.
The match really warmed up then as a series of challenges resulted in yellow cards, Johnny Taylor saw two of them in just 3 minutes to get first use of the soap after being given his marching orders by Richie Winter. Dundalk took just three minutes to make the extra man tell as lovely work between Keith Ward and Mark Quigley sent Ross Gaynor scampering into the box. Faced with Morris he sent him the wrong way and slipped the ball over the falling keeper to put Dundalk back in charge again.
Dundalk were happy to sit back and attack on the break now knowing that it would take a couple of Glentoran goals to deny them passage to the next round. So it proved, as they saw the game out and progress to the semis.
Dundalk: Peter Cherrie; Simon Madden, Colin Hawkins, Shane Guthrie, Nathan Murphy; Daniel Kearns, Greg Bolger (Stephen Maher 65), Keith Ward, Ross Gaynor; Mark Quigley, Jason Byrne.
Subs not used: Paul Murphy, Stephen McDonnell, Johnny Breen, Mark Griffin.
Bookings: Cherrie (59), Ward (64).
Glentoran: Elliott Morris; Jamie McGovern, Sean Ward, Johnny Taylor, Jason Hill; Grant Gardiner, Daryl Fordyce (Colin Nixon 83), Richard Clarke, Jimmy Callagher; Andrew Waterworth, Matthew Burrows.
Subs not used: Paul Leeman, Neal Gawley, Peter Steele, Calum Birney, Michael Doran, Danial Burns.
Bookings: Burrows (62), McGovern (67), Taylor (75).
Sent Off: Taylor (78).
Referee: Ritchie Winter.
Attendance: 1,800 (estimate).
ExtraTime Man of the Match: Richard Clarke (Glentoran).