Linfield went down to a 1-0 defeat in the County Antrim FA cup to Cliftonville at Solitude on Monday night.
Linfield edged the first half and came close to scoring on several occasions - Kirsty McGuinness free kicks were either just over the bar, saved by the keeper or found the side netting.
In a fine move, a short corner routine ended with a goalbound shot by McGuinness being pushed over the bar by a grateful keeper.
The Linfield defence had one major scare when somehow the Blues got the ball off the line when the hosts looked sure to score.
After a goal less first half the home side upped the tempo in the second half. Five minutes after the restart Linfield keeper Nicole Adams made a fine save from a Callaghan free kick but Cliftonville’s Connolly was first to react to the loose ball and she bundled the ball into the net from close range.
Linfield brought Casey Howe and Mia Fitzsimmons on replacing Rebecca Bassett and Louise McDaniel but it was the home side who had the best chance for the next goal.
The Cliftonville sub was through one on one with Nicole Adams in goal for Linfield but Adams made a superb save from close range and then made an even better save from the rebound.
Cliftonville held on for the win they just about deserved for their second half pressure.
Linfield start their league campaign at new Midgley Park on Wednesday against Sion Swifts.
Tonight’s Linfield team line up
1 - Nicole Adams
14 - Kelsie Burrows
5 - Clare Timoney
3 - Louise McFrederick
7 - Megan Bell
19 - Abbie Magee
18 - Rebecca McKenna
11 - Kirsty McGuinness
9 - Rebecca Bassett
22 - Louise McDaniel
97 - Chloe McCarron
2 - Mia Fitzsimmons - replaced Rebecca Bassett
24 - Casey Howe - replaced Louise McDaniel
26 - Caitlin McGuinness
25 - Naomi Donnan
23 - Kirsty Cameron