Match Details
Season :
2016/2017
Date :
18th April 2017
Competition :
Irish Premier League
Venue :
Windsor Park
Referee :
Steven Taylor
Linfield Scorers :
Aaron Burns 27', Mark Haughey 33', Paul Smyth
Linfield Yellow Card :
Smyth
Glenavon Yellow Cards :
Tuffey, Kilmartin
Teams
Linfield Team :
Carroll (GK), Haughey (Stafford 51’), Callacher, Waterworth, Lowry, Burns (Millar 68’), Clarke, Casement, Mulgrew (c) (Ward 45’), Quinn, Smyth
Linfield Subs not used :
Gaynor, Strain
Glenavon Team :
Tuffey (GK), Canning, Kilmartin (Patton 65’), Cooper, Hall (Norton 45’), Marron, Doyle, McGrory, Moorhouse (Jenkins 65’), Singleton, Gray
Glenavon Subs not used :
Bates, Renato
Report
With three league games to go there was a real buzz surrounding Windsor Park this evening with the title race neck and neck and the Linfield faithful got to pay tribute to an all-time great, Billy ‘Minto’ Murray who took to the pitch to take the salute having received the Torrans Trophy award.

The Blues played host to a Glenavon side with European ambitions whilst Healy’s men were aiming to keep the pressure on Crusaders who were a point ahead in the table. Linfield remained unchanged following Saturday’s 2-0 win at Ballymena.

The Lurgan men had a go early on as Andy Hall stung the hands of Linfield ‘keeper Roy Carroll with a well-struck free-kick but it was meat and drink to a goalkeeper of Carroll’s pedigree.

Linfield called Glenavon’s Jonny Tuffey into action when Aaron Burns slipped in Paul Smyth whose thunderous drive was fisted away by the former Linfield ‘keeper.

The game burst into life on 27 minutes as Andy Waterworth stormed in on a poor backpass by a Glenavon defender and he was clipped as he took the ball around Jonny Tuffey. Tuffey received a yellow card which outraged the home support who felt the card should have been a different colour as he was the last man. However, the Blues were awarded a penalty which Aaron Burns expertly struck into the bottom corner to fire Linfield into the lead.

Linfield had their tails up and struck a second on 33 minutes when Niall Quinn’s glorious cross from the right was nodded home magnificently by Mark Haughey from around 15 yards. A guided header of the highest quality. Tuffey had no chance.

The Blues extended their lead to three goals just before half-time when Roy Carroll’s long ball was flicked on by Waterworth into Paul Smyth’s path and the 19 year-old stormed in on goal before firing into the far corner.

Half Time: Linfield 3 – 0 Glenavon

Hamilton’s team rarely threatened Linfield on the night but went close just after the break when Joel Cooper headed just over an Andy McGrory cross from the right side.

Despite a healthy three-goal lead Linfield showed no signs of taking the foot off the gas and went close to adding a fourth when Jimmy Callacher headed just over the crossbar from Niall Quinn’s inswinging corner.

Andy Waterworth almost added his name to the scoresheet when he burst beyond the Glenavon defence but he saw his low shot saved by the outstretched leg of Tuffey.

Glenavon went close to pulling one back with five minutes remaining when James Gray got on the end of a corner. However, his header was headed off the line by the alert Jimmy Callacher.

The Blues almost added a fourth late on when Kirk Millar’s swerving piledriver was beaten away but it mattered not as Linfield took three points from this evening’s final home league game of the season.

Full Time: Linfield 3 – 0 Glenavon

LinfieldFC.com Man of the Match: Stephen Lowry

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