Europa League Play off
Linfield Scorers :
Kurtis Byrne 26', Andy Waterworth 51', Stephen Fallon 89'
Glentoran Scorers :
Davidson 63' (P), McGuigan 66', W Garrett 79', Allen 84'
Linfield Yellow Cards :
Crowe, Fallon, Millar
Linfield Team :
Alex Moore (GK), Joe Crowe, Mark Haughey, Jimmy Callacher, Matthew Clarke (Achille Campion 80’), Kirk Millar, Stephen Lowry (Louis Rooney 89’), Stephen Fallon, Niall Quinn, Kurtis Byrne, Andy Waterworth
Linfield Subs not used :
A Carroll, McGuinness, Casement
Glentoran Team :
Elliott Morris (GK) William Garrett, Callum Birney (Nathan Kerr 40’), Jonny Addis, Ross Redman, Steven Gordon, Marcus Kane ©, John McGuigan (James Ferrin 90’), Peter McMahon (Dylan Davidson 53’), Robbie McDaid, Curtis Allen
Glentoran Subs not used :
Linfield have missed out on a Europa League spot after a 4-3 derby defeat at the hands of Glentoran at Windsor Park. The Blues’ season is now over, after passing up a two-goal lead, with Glentoran striking four goals in 25 second half minutes.
The Glens started the brighter of the two teams and were looking dangerous on the counter attack. They were first to threaten on three minutes when Robbie McDaid did well to work it up to John McGuigan but his shot from the edge of the box was crucially blocked.
Kurtis Byrne had Linfield’s first real effort just shy of 20 minutes in, having a dig with a speculative effort from 25 yards but the ball sailed harmlessly wide. A better chance followed two minutes later when Andy Waterworth raced through on goal but he saw his low strike well saved by Glentoran’s experienced goalkeeper Elliott Morris down to his right.
Glentoran then missed a golden chance when Jonny Addis’ long throw-in dropped for Marcus Kane in the area. He swivelled and fired a shot towards goal but it drifted past the post by an inch.
With both teams knocking on the door, the deadlock was broken on 26 minutes in fine fashion when Kurtis Byrne bagged his sixth goal of the season since joining in January, producing a neat turn and finish into the corner from inside the box, great technique from the Dubliner.
Mark Haughey saw the ball drop kindly for him 12 yards from goal but his strike was fired straight at Elliott Morris meaning Linfield went into the break with a one goal lead.
Half Time: Linfield 1 – 0 Glentoran
Linfield made a good start to the second half and doubled their advatange on 51 minutes with a silky move involving Niall Quinn, Kirk Millar, Matthew Clarke and Stephen Lowry whose low strike was kept out by Elliott Morris but the ball rebounded for Andy Waterworth to bundle the ball home.
Moments before the goal, young goalkeeper Alex Moore made a vital fingertip save to keep out Robbie McDaid’s shot.
Glentoran grabbed themselves a lifeline on 63 minutes when striker Curtis Allen was pulled from behind, resulting in a penalty which was coolly converted by substitute Dylan Davison to send the ball into the net to Alex Moore’s left.
The Glens drew level with a second in four minutes when John McGuigan found the net with a fine curling effort from 20 yards.
Glentoran completed the turnaround on 79 minutes when defender William Garrett headed Glens’ noses in front from Ross Redman’s free-kick, before Curtis Allen gave the Glens a two-goal cushion, blasting home a fourth goal on 84 minutes.
Stephen Fallon pulled one back for Linfield to make it 4-3 on 89 minutes with a well-struck volley to give Linfield an inkling of hope going into three additional minutes.
Full Time: Linfield 3 – 4 Glentoran