Match Details
Season :
2018/2019
Date :
5th January 2019
Competition :
Irish Cup
Venue :
Windsor Park
Referee :
Jamie Robinson
Linfield Scorer :
Joel Cooper (65')
Teams
Linfield Team :
Carroll (GK), Casement, Callacher, Stafford, M Clarke, Mulgrew (C), Fallon, Cooper, Kearns (Millar 68'), J Stewart, Waterworth (O'Connor 68')
Linfield Subs not used :
Deane, Garrett, Mitchell, Reynolds and Quinn
Report
Linfield edged past a battling Ballyclare Comrades to put their name in the hat for the Sixth round of the Irish Cup thanks to Joel Cooper’s header.

The first half was a dull affair and a frustrating half for Linfield as Ballyclare defended well.

The best chance of the half fell for Andy Waterworth after Callacher challenged for a cross but Ballyclare goalkeeper Jack Hazard was off his line quickly to deny Waterworth with a point blank save.

Gary Brown threatened for the visitors with a well hit drive from distance but it flashed just over the crossbar.

Right back Curtis Woods also gave Linfield a scare. After storming down the right flank, his cross-come-shot had to be smartly turned away by Roy Carroll.

Chris Casement almost found an opener from the edge of the box after a bit of pinball in the area but he fired just over.

Daniel Kearns combined well with Joel Cooper at a well-worked corner routine before Cooper fired into the side netting from an improbable angle.

Half Time: Linfield 0 – 0 Ballyclare Comrades

Within minutes of the restart, the second half provided some talking points. Firstly, Ballyclare went close when they broke up the pitch and Adam Gray’s low shot was held by Roy Carroll at the second attempt. Up the other end, Andy Waterworth burst into the box before hitting the deck but the referee waved away penalty appeals.

The breakthrough finally arrived on 64 minutes and it came from Joel Cooper. Chris Casement whipped in a cross which was flicked on by Waterworth at the front post, with Joel Cooper on hand to head the ball into the corner. The former Ballyclare man didn’t celebrate out of respect to his former club.

Mark Stafford got on the end of two separate Joel Cooper corners but on both occasions the big defender headed just wide.

Casement connected well with a volley when the ball fell nicely for him on the edge of the box but his effort struck substitute Michael O’Connor.

Michael O’Connor almost sealed the deal late on when he nipped in ahead of the onrushing goalkeeper but a defender out him under pressure and he couldn’t quite get enough purchase on his effort to send it on goal.

Full Time: Linfield 1 – 0 Ballyclare Comrades

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