Former Premiership duo combine for six goals to help new club start season with 9-1 victory

Former Dungannon Swifts striker Joe McCready scored twice in Limavady United's 9-1 win over Banbridge Town. PIC: David Maginnis/Pacemaker Press
Former Dungannon Swifts striker Joe McCready scored twice in Limavady United's 9-1 win over Banbridge Town. PIC: David Maginnis/Pacemaker Press

Ian Parkhill, who made over 200 appearances for Coleraine, arrived at Limavady from Moyola Park earlier this summer and has been joined by former Dungannon Swifts ace Joe McCready, returning for a third spell with the County Londonderry outfit under boss Paul Owens.

It took Parkhill only five minutes to open his season account, getting his team back on level terms after Conor Downey’s early strike for Banbridge, before doubling his tally moments later and rounded off a first-half hat-trick in the 36th-minute.

McCready’s brace helped Limavady head into the break with a 6-1 lead and Parkhill grabbed a fourth just after the restart with the veteran duo contributing six goals to their eventual 9-1 success.

"There is a brave age there with a combined age of 66!" laughed McCready. “No matter what age you are, Parky and I both want to keep on playing for as long as we can.

"I've no intention of stopping anytime soon. We both love it and both want to keep scoring goals.

"Parky and I are both 33 now so they won't be knocking too many balls over the top or into the channel for us!”

McCready has scored in all three matches since arriving from Dungannon with Saturday’s brace adding to two goals in last weekend’s 6-1 BetMcLean Cup victory over Tobermore United and a debut strike in Limavady’s 4-1 win against Portavogie Rangers.

He left Limavady for Institute in July 2018 and went on to enjoy spells with Ballymena United and the Swifts, but says there was only one place he was going after Owens got in touch, despite offers from teams higher up the Irish League pyramid.

"There were a couple of other teams looking me but going back to Limavady is far handier with work and it being far closer to home,” he added. “He had me before at Limavady.

"I left him to go to Coleraine and have came back to him before too, so this is the third time. It was maybe one or two phone calls and that was about it!

"He knows how I tick and gets the best out of me. I know it's in a lower league and when I did sign for them I got a few phone calls saying 'why didn't you continue on?'.

"Then when we played Coleraine and Ballymena, I played well in pre-season and people were asking why I signed here.

"Then you think to yourself 'maybe I should have stayed!'. I don't have any regrets and I'm very happy."

"The last time I was at Limavady with Owensy we won the treble so hopefully we could do something similar this time around."

An opening day triumph has only helped add fuel to the fire of Limavady’s pre-season silverware goal.

“I don't think we will fear anybody,” said McCready. “We had a meeting at the start of pre-season and everybody had the same objective and that was to win the league.

"There was no talk about getting a play-off or anything like that. It's all about winning the league and I'm no different.

"I wasn't coming back to battle it out with somebody else. We'll be looking to go up as champions."