Niall Quinn looks ahead to Friday’s vital Premiership game

Posted : 10th March 2022

Blues left back Niall Quinn has been speaking to Jamie Megarry at following Tuesday night's 2-0 win away to Ballymena United at the Ballymena Showgrounds.

Linfield were reduced to ten men just minutes after taking the lead when Christy Manzinga was sent off five minutes before half-time and Quinn says the Blues responded in the best way, believing that was key to the result which kept the team at the top of the Danske Bank Premiership.

"I thought the result and performance against Ballymena was absolutely fantastic given the adversity we faced being down to ten men. We managed the game very well and took the game to Ballymena at the right times in the second half but also defended resolutely to keep a clean sheet.

"It can go one of two ways when you go down to ten men, teams can capitulate or teams can really kick on like we did against Ballymena where it gives you a bit more drive being at a numerical disadvantage."

The Linfield Academy graduate who has made over 300 appearances for the Blues played the full 90 minutes on Tuesday, something which he hasn't managed as many times as he'd have hoped to see recently but he's hoping his fortunes are now turning for the better.

"I was delighted to get 90 minutes under my belt in what has been a real struggle of a season for myself with injuries and illness but I’m starting to get myself back to a certain level of fitness to hopefully play my part in the run in to the end of the season."

A vocal Linfield crowd raised their voices in support for their team at Ballymena on Tuesday as they recognised the challenge that faced the Blues on the night and the 28 year-old is hopeful for similar support against Crusaders on Friday night.

"The travelling supporters were excellent as always! They certainly drove us on especially in the second half when we needed that extra lift to get us over the finish line. I don’t doubt for a minute that they will play their part once again against Crusaders on Friday especially being at home. We need them out in their numbers for this very important match."

It's the next 'Cup final' for Linfield in the context of the title race with just three points separating the top three with only eight fixtures remaining and, as Niall explains, a tough match is expected as it historically tends to be when Linfield play Crusaders.

"We can expect a seriously strong Crusaders team coming to Windsor who are very in form and can hurt you if you aren’t at the very top of your game. They’ve been very strong defensively so they will undoubtedly be resolute so it will take us a lot to break them down but it’s a game the squad is really looking forward to."

You can give Niall and his teammates your valued support for the big game under the floodlights at Windsor Park by purchasing a ticket from the ticketing section of this website. Supporters can then either scan their digital ticket off their phone screens at the turnstiles, or alternatively print off and scan the page if desired.

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