It’s Boxing Day, it’s Derby Day, and the only thing that matters is winning ……… and Linfield did that.
Deserved it for the second-half performance. Could, and possibly should, have had a third goal. Needed it too. You had the feeling that if Glentoran got a goal back, it would be a nervous finish, and so it proved.
The free-kick that the goal came from, was awarded for a tactical foul. Yep, you read that right, Jamie Mulgrew was the one doing the fouling to stop someone attacking, instead of the other way around.
It was Jordan Stewart who he fouled, who was the focal point of Glentoran’s attacking play. If Stewart was Glentoran’s main attacking threat, Andrew Waterworth was Linfield’s main attacking outlet.
Quiet in the first-half, he made up for it early in the second-half by firing home from close range after a Mark McAllister played it to him after his original shot was saved.
Linfield had their tails up and went for a second. A nice piece of play by Mark McAllister saw him get into a position to shoot, before being brought down. Aaron Burns slotted the penalty home, making up for his red card against Glentoran in August.
Linfield had enough chances to make it 3-0, but weren’t able to take them.
Glentoran got a goal back near the end through David Scullion. Glentoran sensed they could get a draw. They had lots of balls into the box without any chances, but it was still nervous.
In Injury Time, Mark Clarke was sent-off. The third time in 2013 against Linfield, and fourth time against Linfield in twenty two months. Betting on him to get sent-off is easy money.
Talking of walking red cards, Steven McAlorum, sent-off inside the first five minutes last Boxing Day, tried to get involved with Linfield players after the full-time whistle. He was substituted during the game.
No point worrying about other team’s problems.
To top it off, Crusaders and Cliftonville drew, meaning Linfield are now six points clear. Hopefully, we won’t lose two of the next three games, like the last time we were six points clear.
January is a busy month, but it’s a generous fixture list, with Glenavon, Warrenpoint Town, Ballymena United and Ards to face. There is a game against Crusaders sandwiched amongst that. Hopefully, we’ll turn up and put in a performance.
After that, is a trip to Solitude. Hopefully, we’ll turn up and put in a performance.
Six points clear, and a run of six games that will decide the season. Hopefully after that point, we’ll still be in a commanding.
Got some photos, not a great standard. It doesn’t matter, Linfield won, that’s all that matters on Boxing Day.