Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Irish Premiership: Larne lift Gibson Cup as Carrick secure Euro play-off

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Linfield and Cliftonville drew 1-1 in a dress rehearsal of next Saturday’s Irish Cup final.

Substitutes Jordan Stewart and Sam Ashford were on the scoresheet as both sides played out a less than thrilling draw at Windsor Park in the final league game of the campaign.

As a rather uninspiring first half developed, it was the hosts who had the best chance. Chris McKee’s perfectly weighted through ball found Matthew Fitzpatrick down the right-hand channel, who squared the ball across to Braiden Graham who was about to shoot but for a superb intervention from Jonny Addis.

Linfield turned up the pressure in the second half, huffing and puffing but were unable to make a dent in the resolute Cliftonville defence.

That was until the 78th minute when the Blues hit the front through second half substitute Stewart. Joel Cooper’s cross from the left was hung to the back post, where Stewart was on hand to head home from close range.

The Reds hit back eight minutes later with an equaliser through Ashford, who was lively in the area to convert Keevan Hawthore’s low cross from the left-hand side.

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