HARLAND AND WOLFF WELDERS 1-5 LINFIELD 21.7.2016

Linfield had hoped to be in European action last night, but it was instead Cork City who were hosting (and beating) Swedish side Hacken.

As a result, Linfield made the trip to Tillysburn Park for the first time since 2012, just 48 hours after their last visit to East Belfast, to face Dundela.

With that in mind, there were some changes, but not the wholesale changes that perhaps might have been expected, with Jamie Mulgrew, Ross Gaynor, Jimmy Callacher, Kirk Millar and Reece Glendenning starting for the 2nd time in 48 hours.

There was also a start for Ross Clarke, who came on as a substitute against Dundela, scoring a goal, as he continues his return from after missing most of last season through injury.

It was Welders who had the first chance, with Roy Carroll having to rush out of his goal to smother the ball as an attacker ran through.

Carroll was vocal throughout the game, organising his defence and dictating their positioning.

Up front, Michael McLellan, against the club he left in January, and Adam Salley were given a chance to impress up front. Neither really did.

It was surprising that Aaron Duke wasn’t involved after his trial game on Tuesday, even off the bench, considering that other players who played on Tuesday played last night.

Ross Clarke put Linfield 1-0 up from a free-kick after a foul on Ross Gaynor.

Clarke was central to most of Linfield’s attacking play.

A foul on him which looked like a penalty to me but was awarded as a free-kick on the edge of the box resulted in Linfield’s second goal as he fired in his second free-kick of the night, and third of the week.

Clarke left the pitch due to injury before the end of the first-half. A concern, after his injury problems last season.

If people thought that Linfield’s attacking threat would be diminished, they were wrong, as Paul Smyth took his place.

Smyth picked up where he left off on Tuesday night against Dundela.

Aaron Burns was also introduced off the bench, with both him and Smyth adding quickfire goals midway through the second-half the secure the win for Linfield, giving them a 4-0 ;ead.

Paul Smyth continued to run the show, the centre point for most of Linfield’s attacking.

A foul on him towards the end won a (admittedly soft) penalty.

Smyth took the penalty, despite Aaron Burns intentions. There wasn’t even a game of rock-scissors-paper to decide who took it like Burns and Gaynor had at Warrenpoint in March.

Smyth justified the decision to let him take the penalty to make it 5-0 to Linfield.

Despite having a commanding lead, Roy Carroll could be heard screaming “CLEAN SHEET!!! CLEAN SHEET!!” at his defence. He didn’t get the clean sheet he wanted as Welders pulled a goal back to make it 5-1.

There are still games at Tullyvallen and Distillery to come. Unless another game is arranged in the final week, this will have been my last pre-season game for this year.

It’s now just over two weeks until the main event starts, and the fixture computer has given Linfield a trip to Ballinamallard on the opening day. It’s a trip Linfield usually seem to make in the opening months of the season.

Three points and sunshine would be nice.

But most importantly, three points.

Photo Album

Harland and Wolff Welders v Linfield 2012

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2 thoughts on “HARLAND AND WOLFF WELDERS 1-5 LINFIELD 21.7.2016

  1. Pingback: 2016 IN PICTURES – JULY | Analogue Boy In A Digital World

  2. Pingback: PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : JULY | Analogue Boy In A Digital World

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