WARRENPOINT TOWN 1-2 LINFIELD 8.2.2020

One down, ten to go. Or if you prefer – Three down, thirty to go.

Having got back to the top of the League with a win over Dungannon on Tuesday night, Linfield were intent on staying there.

All they have left this season is League matches, eleven of them to go in order to win the League.

The first of those was at Warrenpoint, a ground they had won at in all eight of their previous visits, as well as a win at Stangmore Park when Wareenpoint played there in the early months of the 2013-2014 season.

Not all of those wins have been straightforward, some have been dicey.

With the Top 5 separated by four points, there was no room for error from Linfield, or indeed the four teams below them.

Linfield were boosted that two of them, Glentoran and Coleraine, would be facing each other. The fact that at least one rival would be guaranteed to drop points made getting three points even more important for Linfield.

Linfield were boosted by the return of Shayne Lavery after suspension, and he came straight in for Rory Currie, hoping to repeat his feat of scoring in his previous two games against Warrenpoint this season.

This match would be played in the early stages of Storm Ciara, and Warrenpoint were hoping to take advantage of it, playing into the wind in the first-half and shooting straight from kick-off, forcing Rohan Ferguson into a (albeit, easy) save three seconds into the game.

Surprisingly, there wasn’t a shout from the crowd for Linfield to sort it out, that Warrenpoint were all over them.

It was a slow start from both teams as they tried to settle themselves in the conditions.

Shayne Lavery had Linfield’s first chance when his shot from a wide position was well saved by Warrenpoint’s goalkeeper, although a cross would have been a better option for Lavery.

Stephen Fallon had a shot easily saved before Joel Cooper cut inside but fired well wide as Linfield began to put Warrenpoint under pressure.

It didn’t feel like a Linfield goal was imminent, but it start to feel that Linfield were starting to take control of the game.

Eventually, Linfield did take the lead, but the assist came from a Warrenpoint player, after a header from Colm Deasy back to his keeper was short (The keeper actually shouted for him to head the ball back to him) and Andrew Waterworth jumped knocked the ball over the keeper first time to put Linfield 1-0 up.

Like on Tuesday night, the question wasn’t if he would score, but if he would get to the ball in time to score. Waterworth must think that it’s Christmas with all these presents he’s got this week.

Apologies for using the C Word in February.

Linfield’s next chance to extend their lead came just before the half-time whistle when Kirk Millar stretched to get a shot on goal, but the shot was saved.

A very satisfactory half for Linfield, nullifying Warrenpoint’s wind advantage, and getting a 1-0 lead themselves. Now they had to go and complete the job.

There was a goal in the early minutes of the second-half, but it was for Warrenpoint, as a heavy touch from Jimmy Callacher saw him lose the ball and one pass saw Ryan Swan make the most of his free space to fire home and make it 1-1. This was not what Linfield had anticipated.

The goal galvanised Linfield, and made them more determined to get the three points.

Warrenpoint couldn’t get out of their own half due to a wave of Linfield pressure.

That pressure was rewarded when Jimmy Callacher headed a free-kick across the penalty area, and Andrew Waterworth was bundled over before he could get on the end of it.

There was only one man going to take it. It was a pressure penalty. If he missed it, you felt that this could end up being a frustrating day for Linfield. He stepped up, and panenkaed it, just as he did at Solitude in 2017.

For a brief moment, it looked like the keeper had saved it, but thankfully, it was only a touch of the ball as it ended up in the back of the next to put Linfield 2-1 up.

Even though a second goal was welcome, Linfield needed a third just to be sure.

It looked like that was going to come when a speculative long range shot from Stephen Fallon got deflected and looked up and then picked up a bit of pace, but Warrenpoint’s keeper was able to adjust his bodyshape and make the save.

Throughout this game it was obvious that Linfield were managing the conditions better. When the wind was against them, they were able to get their passes and through balls to hold up and keep the pressure on. When the wind was with them, they were able to use the wind to get passes in behind Warrenpoint’s defence.

It looked like that third goal was going to come when Shayne Lavery got on the end of a Joel Cooper cross but Warrenpoint’s keeper made himself big and saved the effort, doing the same when Lavery tried to backheel the rebound in. You just know it would have found the back of the net in September or October, such is the life of a striker.

The lack of a third goal made things nervous for Linfield. The only real moment of worry was an Emmett Bennett header straight at Rohan Ferguson. Either side of the keeper, and it would have been a real worry for Linfield.

In injury time, Warrenpoint had a flurry of possession and balls into Linfield’s penalty area, but Linfield were able to hold out and get a 2-1 win.

Any win is a good day, but things got even better when scores from elsewhere were digested.

Coleraine beat Glentoran, a draw would have been perfect, but if you had to choose a winner, you’d go for the team that are further behind. Cliftonville usually have (at least) one bad result a season against Dungannon Swifts, I thought they’d be saving that for the Irish Cup game in a few weeks time rather than in the League, while Crusaders lost to Glenavon.

That means that Linfield are now four points clear at the top, a bit of daylight. Not a lot, that cane disappear very quickly. The aim is to keep on winning.

The next Matchday is very interesting.

Linfield travel to Ballymena United on Friday night in one of only four games next weekend.

Ballymena have lost their last six League games. I know what you’re thinking. I’m fearing that as well. Let’s make those fears unfounded.

The reason why there are only four League matches next weekend is due to the League Cup Final.

Because of that, Coleraine and Crusaders won’t have a League match, and neither will Cliftonville, as they were due to play Crusaders.

All the games are important, but this one especially so. Three rivals inactive, and guaranteed point droppage from one of them when they do play. This is a great opportunity for Linfield to get more points on the board and put the pressure on their rivals.

Linfield fans have been talking about the benefits of games in hand, now we can be talking about the benefits of how points on the board are better than games in hand. We just need to get those points on the board.

It seems silly to have these games on a Friday night when the League Cup Final kicks off at 7.30pm on the Saturday night. League games on a Saturday could easily be accommodated alongside this, even if they were earlier kick-offs.

Hopefully, if this is the new kick-off for the League Cup Final, League games that weekend can be moved to the Saturday from 2021 onwards.

But on to more short term issues. Three points at Ballymena please.

Photo Album

2019 IN PICTURES – DECEMBER (SO FAR …..)

December’s photo adventures had to wait a full seven days, when I headed to Windsor Park to see Linfield beat Cliftonville.

A few days later, I headed to Ulster Hall for my final concert of the year, to see Primal Scream.

The following Saturday, I headed to Warrenpoint to see Linfield get a 2-0 win.

That was followed by heading to Windsor Park to see Linfield draw 1-1 with Crusaders.

December so far hasn’t been that busy so far, but there’s still some photo adventures to come in the final week.

It’s unlikely that i’ll be at Seaview tomorrow for the Steel and Sons Cup Final, but i’ll be at The Oval on Boxing Day. As if i’d be anywhere else.

Boxing Day is the start of three busy days, as i’ll be heading to Ulster v Connacht the day after, and then Coleraine v Linfield the day after that.

I hope you’ve enjoyed by look back at my photo adventures in 2019. Of course, there’ll be more photo adventures in 2020.

In terms of concerts, Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott, Blossoms and Badly Drawn Boy are already on the horizon.

Travelwise, Manchester and Bray are confirmed. I’m planning to walk up Bray Head. While in Bray, i’ll sneak in a trip to Dublin. I’m hoping to see a Euro 2020 game while i’m there, but i’ll definitely catch some League Of Ireland action.

May is the new date for Hit The North, so i’ll be photographing that, and any other Street Art I spot during the year.

And i’ll be crossing my fingers for some snow to photograph at some point because i’m a big kid.

Linfield v Cliftonville

Primal Scream live at Ulster Hall

Primal Scream live at Ulster Hall Photo Album

Warrenpoint Town v Linfield

Linfield v Crusaders

WARRENPOINT TOWN 0-2 LINFIELD 14.12.2019

At the mid point of a busy December period, Linfield travelled to Warrenpoint, a ground they had won on all their previous visits to face a side they had beaten 7-0 in October.

However, this would be more difficult than those stats suggested, with some of those previous visits having some wobbly moments for Linfield, most notably both their visits in 2014. Add into that the fact that Warrenpoint have improved recently, sending Coleraine and Ballymena home from Milltown without a single point between them.

Kirk Millar’s red card last week presented an opportunity for Jordan Stewart to come into the starting eleven, while Andrew Waterworth came in for Bastien Hery, as Linfield look to rest him ahead of a busy Christmas period.

Just as significant, was the appearance of Mark Haughey and Daniel Kearns on the bench after long injury lay-offs. The sight of Haughey, even though he’s a defender, would have been a worrying sight for Warrenpoint, given his goalscoring record against them.

Even in the opening minute, Warrenpoint looked nervous, not properly dealing with some clearances.

One of those clearances not dealt with fell perfectly for Andrew Waterworth, who made the most of the space, the opportunity to strike at goal, and the fact that Warrenpoint’s keeper was slightly off his line to fire over him to put Linfield 1-0 up with just 48 seconds on the clock.

Remarkably, this wasn’t the first time that Waterworth has scored for Linfield inside the first minute, as this goal felt like injury time compared with the 18 seconds he took to score against Portadown in 2014.

An early goal was essential in a match like this, so that Warrenpoint wouldn’t have something to hold on to.

More Linfield pressure followed, usually Crossfield balls to Chris Casement or Joel Cooper, who were usually able to get in behind Warrenpoint’s defence.

Their crosses were usually dealt with by Warrenpoint somehow, or they were a cross which evaded everyone.

Stephen Fallon looked like he was going to score when a clearance fell to him, but his low shot was deflected wide.

In the last minute of the half, a cross fell to Jimmy Callacher, but he couldn’t bundle the ball in when he really should have scored.

Linfield really needed a second goal. The longer it stayed 1-0, the longer that Warrenpoint will have felt that they could sneak something from the game, all they needed was one chance to fall their way.

The grim reality was, that Linfield only had one shot on target in a half that they totally dominated.

It was obvious that Linfield players were told to step it up at half-time, judging by the increased urgency in the opening minutes of the second-half.

The best moment that pressure brought saw Shayne Lavery stretch for a header a few yards out, but it went over.

Andrew Waterworth and Chris Casement got onto the end of a Joel Cooper cross, but similar to the Callacher chance in the first-half, neither of them could divert the ball in.

Every time Linfield got the ball, the plan was simple, give the ball to Joel Cooper, who glided past Warrenpoint players every time he got it.

Jordan Stewart was next to be frustrated as his free-kick hit the side netting.

The longer it stayed 1-0, the more you feared that Warrenpoint would sneak something late on.

What was surprising, was that there were no substitutions for Linfield. The options were there, with Daniel Kearns and Bastien Hery both available to come on and offer something different in the attacking third.

Eventually, in injury time, the second goal came for Linfield when a long kick upfield from Rohan Ferguson saw Shayne Lavery get in behind Warrenpoint’s defence, the ball falling perfectly for him to finish from a few yards out.

For some reason, Matthew Shevlin came on for Shayne Lavery. A pointless substitution, he only got seconds on the pitch.

It was frustrating that the second goal didn’t come earlier, as Mark Haughey or Daniel Kearns could have been brought on to get some much needed game time.

As fans left Milltown, scores were filtering through from other grounds, and it was all good news for Linfield, with Coleraine drawing with Larne, and Glentoran and Crusaders drawing with each other. Those results meant that Linfield now have an outright lead of two points.

With the table so tight, it was a strange quirk that in a four week period between November 30th and December 28th, the top five all play each other with the exception of Coleraine not playing Crusaders.

Linfield have already played one of those teams, and the next three are against teams in the top five. They are games Linfield really can’t afford to lose, even though they have points and games in their favour.

Now if they could win them, we could kill off four rivals in one productive month and storm through a crowd, just as Cliftonville did in November and December 2012, racking up the wins while those around them were dropping points.

The first of those games is against Crusaders. There is nothing to be afraid of. Too many times in recent years we have been afraid of Crusaders. We proved we’re a better team three times last season, two of them when they were hoping to breathe down our necks in Winter.

Take our chances and don’t let them have speculative long range shots. It’s really that simple.

The games don’t stop after the busy Christmas/New Year period, with the Irish Cup starting on 4th January.

It’s a dream draw for me, a lower league team away from home, and it’s at a ground I’ve never been to. Queen’s University at The Dub. Not a bad way for my first Saturday football match of 2020.

Tickets have been a topic of conversation this week. Belfast Telegraph managed to fill some column inches by reporting the non story that Republic of Ireland will have only 5% (around 900) of tickets for a Euro 2020 Play-Off at Windsor Park.

Earlier that day, Scotland announced tickets prices for their match against Israel, so i’m guessing there was some sort of meeting or a deadline to confirm arrangements.

I presume the IFA have made arrangements with their Slovakian counterparts, just as the FAI have been given arrangements by their Bosnian counterparts.

But I guess neither of those stories are glamourous enough.

The more you talk about Northern Ireland v Republic of Ireland, the more it’s not going to happen.

I’m not sure i’m in the mood to tolerate idiots phoning up Nolan to demand the game be moved to Lansdowne Road because Windsor Park isn’t big enough. Or even better, demand that Northern Ireland builds a 60,000 capacity stadium at 5 days notice.

I’ve got my tickets for Boxing Day and Coleraine. Credit to the club for having evening sales on Wednesday past, it is really convenient for fans hindered by not being able to get out of work to get to Windsor Park.

My point still stands that has been raised in the past, that any match which is ticketed should have tickets on sale four weeks before the game. That should actually be a formal rule.

For some reason, the Steel and Sons Cup Final is all ticket, which is a ridiculous decision which will vastly reduce the gate, as a lot or people, myself included, will probably decide to attend that morning if they are going to the match.

Usually around this time of year, League Of Ireland fixtures are released, so i’ll keep an eye out for them.

Hopefully, a Monday night fixture list when i’m staying in Bray in late June with Bray at home.

Finally, this match, as with every other match in Northern Ireland this weekend, had a minute silence before in memory of Carrick Rangers player Jerry Thompson.

I was out on Tuesday night so I was late to the news. I had originally thought it had happened during a match like Marc Vivien Foe, as Carrick were playing Glenavon, when I saw the news flash up on my ipad.

I don’t know why, but when a footballer or active manager dies, it just takes you aback with a big massive shock, like Justin Edinburgh, Emiliano Sala, Gary Speed or Phil O’Donnell. Though not managing anyone at the time, you can include Tommy Breslin in that list.

Unsurprisingly, Carrick’s match against Cliftonville was postponed. It seems a bit crass to call it a game in hand given the circumstances of the postponement, i’ll refer to it as “Game they have to play” when referring to Cliftonville’s place in the table in relation to the title race.

Such sad news, there’s nothing I can add to what has already been written, said and tweeted about it.

Photo Album

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : SEPTEMBER

I didn’t have to wait long for some football action in September, with Linfield taking on Ards on the first day of the month. I would have to wait a while for a first goal of the month, as that match finished 0-0.

The goals flew in during my next match, as Linfield beat Warrenpoint 5-0, before taking in Northern Ireland’s first ever UEFA Nations League match, a 2-1 home defeat to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

The month ended taking in three further Linfield matches, home wins against Dungannon Swifts and Ballymena United, as well as a draw at Coleraine.

Linfield v Ards

Warrenpoint Town v Linfield

Northern Ireland v Bosnia-Herzegovina

Northern Ireland v Bosnia-Herzegovina Photo Album

Linfield v Dungannon Swifts

Coleraine v Linfield

Linfield v Ballymena United

2018 IN PICTURES – SEPTEMBER

September 2018 began for me with a trip to Windsor Park to see Linfield take on Ards on the first day of the month, for a match that finished 0-0.

The following day, I headed out on bike to check out the latest scribbles on the Belfast Peace Wall.

On the third day of the month, yes, three successive days of photo adventures, I headed to The Limelight to see The Kooks in concert.

The following weekend, it was a football double header, taking in Linfield’s trip to Warrenpoint Town, and then Northern Ireland’s first ever UEFA Nations League match, at home to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

There was more football, taking in Linfield’s matches against Dungannon Swifts and Coleraine.

Sandwiched inbetween that was a trip to The Palm House to see Kyle Falconer in concert, and then Belfast Culture Night.

In the aftermath of Culture Night, I was out getting photos of new Street Art which appeared in Belfast, as part of Hit The North.

The month ended with me taking in Linfield’s home match with Ballymena United.

Linfield v Ards

Belfast Peace Wall Art

Belfast Peace Wall Art Photo Album

The Kooks live at The Limelight

The Kooks live at The Limelight Photo Album

Warrenpoint Town v Linfield

Northern Ireland v Bosnia-Herzegovina

Northern Ireland v Bosnia-Herzegovina Photo Album

Linfield v Dungannon Swifts

Kyle Falconer live at The Palm House

Kyle Falconer live at The Palm House Photo Album

Culture Night Belfast 2018

Culture Night Belfast 2018 Photo Album

Coleraine v Linfield

North Street Art

North Street Art Work In Progress

North Street Art Photo Album

Linfield v Ballymena United

2018 IN PICTURES – FEBRUARY

February 2018 began with a trip to The Limelight, a first proper concert of the year, to see Shed Seven supported by John Power.

That was followed the following midweek by a trip to Warrenpoint to see Linfield take on Warrenpoint Town.

The following Saturday, was Linfield’s 0-0 draw with Dungannon Swifts.

The following week was very busy, with Paul Weller at Ulster Hall followed by Ulster v Edinburgh and then Cliftonville v Linfield.

The weekend after that was a trip to the seaside, to see Linfield take on Ards.

That was then followed by a midweek trip to Windsor Park to see Linfield lose to Glenavon.

Around that time, it was getting cold. So cold, there was the possibility of snow. That didn’t come until March 1st, so you’ll have to wait until next month’s round-up to see that.

John Power live at The Limelight

John Power live at The Limelight Photo Album

Shed Seven live at The Limelight

Shed Seven live at The Limelight Photo Album

Warrenpoint Town v Linfield

Linfield v Dungannon Swifts

Paul Weller live at Ulster Hall

Paul Weller live at Ulster Hall Photo Album

Ulster v Edinburgh

Ulster v Edinburgh Photo Album

Cliftonville v Linfield

Ards v Linfield

Linfield v Glenavon

WARRENPOINT TOWN 0-5 LINFIELD 7.9.2018

Two successive draws in the League and knocked off the top of the table, it could be easy to suggest that things were going wrong for Linfield. That was far from the case.

The first of those draws, was coming from behind away from home with ten men. The second, against Ards, was a game they should have won, and they had enough chances to do so.

Despite deserving to beat Ards, they didn’t, and it was two points dropped, especially when you saw they other results in Matchday 5, with Glenavon and Glentoran drawing. With Crusaders to face Coleraine, one or both of them would be dropping points. It was an opportunity to pull clear that was missed.

If Linfield felt that a draw at home to Ards was two points dropped, that will be evened up by the fact that Coleraine will probably feel the same about their draw at home to Institute the previous week.

Only separated by one goal (There’s still over thirty games for Linfield to remedy that), Linfield and Coleraine will both be feeling they should have an outright points lead. They face each other on 22nd September. There are still two League matches between now and then. Coleraine shouldn’t even be a thought until then.

Two draws in a row wasn’t cause for concern for Linfield, but a third game without a win would prompt a lot of questions to be asked about Linfield’s title ambitions.

If you were having problems in front of goal and looking to get back to winning ways, Warrenpoint would have been the opponents you would have chosen to face, having conceded seventeen goals in their opening five games, the last of those five games was a 6-1 defeat at home to Ballymena United.

With Coleraine, Crusaders, Glenavon and Ballymena United all not involved in League matches this weekend, this was an opportunity for Linfield to pull clear from the chasing pack, albeit with them having a game in hand.

Linfield started the game looking for goals, with Daniel Kearns almost getting in behind Warrenpoint’s defence straight from kick-off.

Warrenpoint couldn’t get out of their own half, with continued Linfield pressure resulting in Warrenpoint conceding a soft free-kick for a foul on Kirk Millar.

That was punished when the free-kick came in, Simon Kelly diverting the ball into his own net.

Having failed to get a goal against Ards, Linfield were on the scoresheet inside three minutes. As the game went on last week, Ards had something to hold on to. Warrenpoint wouldn’t have that.

Warrenpoint responded well to the goal, having some of the ball in Linfield’s half without troubling Roy Carroll. It was only a temporary respite.

Michael O’Connor went narrowly wide with a shot while Jimmy Callacher had a header cleared off the line.

Warrenpoint goalkeeper Aaron McCarey, on his debut, was so busy, a supporter behind the goal shouted at him “Keeper, I bet you’re wondering what the fuck you’ve signed up to”. Cruel.

Meanwhile, a cat ran onto the pitch during the game. Yes, an actual cat, to cheers from the crowd.

You’ll be glad to know that cat was up in front of Newry Courthouse on Saturday morning charged with Football Related Offences and was issued with a Banning Order.

Proper order too. If we don’t address things like this in Irish League football, next thing there’ll be pigs painted in team colours in grounds and a cockerel walking along the side of the pitch during a game.

More Linfield pressure continued as they searched for a second goal. Despite being in control of the game, Josh Robinson got himself a cheap yellow card for throwing the ball on the ground after a free-kick was awarded against him.

Somebody needs to have a word with him about discipline as it was a stupid yellow card, only a few weeks after needlessly getting involved in situations against Crusaders at Seaview.

With Mark Stafford waiting on the bench, primed for action, he could easily lose his place in the team if he gets suspended for reaching the yellow card threshold.

Eventually, Linfied’s pressure got it’s reward when a free-kick was headed across the six yard box for Daniel Kearns to head home from close range to make it 2-0.

The half ended with more Linfield pressure and a flurry of corners. They just couldn’t get the ball into the back of the net.

Linfield were in a commanding position, but the only case of game set match came in the Tennis Court behind the goal they were attacking.

That was resolved in the early minutes of the second-half when Michael O’Connor finished after his original header hit the bar.

Within a few minutes, if there was any doubt over the result, it was gone when a defensive mix-up saw Joel Cooper get hauled down by Aaron McCarey just as he was about to put the ball into the empty net. A penalty was awarded, and a red card eventually followed.

Substitute goalkeeper Berraat Turker tried to psyche out Andrew Mitchell as he waited to take the penalty. I’m not sure why, the game was over even if he missed. He didn’t, and made it 4-0.

With the game won, David Healy could now give some of his substitutes some game time.

There were goals in this game for Linfield, so it was unsurprising that Andrew Waterworth was given an opportunity to get one. Jordan Stewart also got some minutes. It was a surprise that Niall Quinn came on for Daniel Kearns, as Jonathan Smith or Stephen Fallon would have benefitted from the minutes.

Only one more goal for Linfield, as Waterworth got to a through ball before Turker, and put the ball into the empty net.

A win was the most important thing, but it was nice to do so with no drama, and go get a few goals for the tally. Still a long way to go, but it’s good to get the goals in the bank in case the title is decided on goal difference.

Elsewhere, big news of the day was Oran Kearney’s departure from Coleraine to manage St Mirren. Good luck to him. Hopefully, his departure will have the same destabilising effect that Warren Feeney’s departure had at Linfield in 2015.

If it does, Linfield simply have to take advantage, starting with a home match against Dungannon on Saturday.

It’s been three matches since I saw Linfield win at Windsor Park. If they don’t win this one, I think I might be getting a Banning Order.

Photo Album

PHOTO OF THE SEASON : 2017-2018

I hope you’ve enjoyed the month by month look back at the 2017-2018. The less said about what happened on the pitch, the better.

I took a lot of photos, so i’ve rounded up my favourites.

Feel free to vote for your favourite.

PLATT LANE

This was taken in June last year when The Oval was being used for filming a movie about Bert Trautmann, and was decorated to look like Maine Road. I went to get some photos.

I specifically wanted one with 1950s Maine Road and 2017 Oval both in the same shot, and this was my favourite from that day.

CLANDEBOYE

You have roadworks to thank for this photo.

I was held up heading to Ards v Linfield and missed the first couple of minutes.

This was the scene that greeted me as I entered, a crowd with their eyes fixated on the pitch on a warm summer evening.

GARRETT

I like the composition of this photo.

You may be surprised that Robert Garrett is attacking and not defending, he had just kept the ball in play and was now being surrounded by two Dungannon defenders.

PHOTOGRAPHER

I just like the composition of this shot. Taken during Spartans v Linfield in Scottish Challenge Cup.

RAINBOW

Me being arty farty. I love trying to get pictures of rainbows over football grounds. Taken at half-time during Ballinamallard v Linfield in November. A rare time that afternoon when it wasn’t raining.

HAUGHEY

Same match, everyone huddled in the stand to avoid the rain. I like the composition of this shot.

FLEGS

Taken during the Northern Ireland v Switzerland match in November, green and white flags were left out before the game for fans to wave. I decided to take a shot as they were being waved and got lucky.

CELEBRATION

Everything fell into place for this shot, the sky, a well worked goal, and the whole team coming together to celebrate.

GOAL

I like this shot because it captures the emotion of a last minute equaliser as part of a late comeback that never looked like coming.

TIPTON

I was heading to the exit for a quick getaway (in my defence, it was an away game on a weeknight) and stumbled upon this framing as Matthew Tipton looked on as Warrenpoint took on Linfield.

CAMPION

Taken during Cliftonville v Linfield in February, the guy in the red coat makes it makes it with his celebration as Linfield players celebrate in front of their fans.

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : FEBRUARY

February’s football watching began for me with a midweek trip to Warrenpoint to see Linfield take on Warrenpoint Town.

That was followed four days later by Linfield’s 0-0 draw with Dungannon Swifts.

Two away games followed for Linfield on the following weekends, against Cliftonville and Ards, before finishing the month with a midweek home match against Glenavon.

Warrenpoint Town v Linfield

Linfield v Dungannon Swifts

Cliftonville v Linfield

Ards v Linfield

Linfield v Glenavon

2016 IN PICTURES – MARCH

March began for me at Solitude, to see Linfield take on Cliftonville in the Irish Cup, and get their first win there for four years.

The following week, Glentoran were the opponents, but the result was the same, a 3-0 win for Linfield.

After that, it was Solitude again, with Linfield only managing a 2-0 win this time.

Over the Easter Weekend, I went to see Northern Ireland take on Wales in Cardiff, and decided to make a trip of it between Bristol and Cardiff, getting some Street Art photos, and see Bristol Rovers take on Cambridge United.

Upon my return, I headed to Windsor Park to see Northern Ireland take on Slovenia.

The next day, I headed to Warrenpoint to see Linfield take on Warrenpoint, ending a busy Easter period of football watching.

Cliftonville v Linfield

Linfield v Glentoran

Cliftonville v Linfield

Bristol Street Art

Bristol Street Art Photo Album 1

Bristol Street Art Photo Album 2

Cardiff Street Art

Cardiff Street Art Photo Album

Wales v Northern Ireland

Wales v Northern Ireland Photo Album

Bristol Rovers v Cambridge United

Bristol Rovers v Cambridge United Photo Album

Northern Ireland v Slovenia

Northern Ireland v Slovenia Photo Album

Warrenpoint Town v Linfield