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David Scullion and Neil McCafferty put their best foot forward at The Showgrounds (Picture: Lorcan Doherty/


FINAL scores and results from tonight's crucial Carling Premiership with issues at the top and bottom of the table at stake.

CLIFTONVILLE 2 (McMullan 48, Burns 56)
DONEGAL CELTIC 2 (McVeigh 49, McAllister 68)

Donegal Celtic started brightly and might have taken an early lead when a Darren McNamee header fell just wide while Paul McVeigh did have the ball in the net only for it to be ruled offside.

And McVeigh was the saviour at the other end when he popped up later in the half to clear a Rory Donnelly header off the line.

Cliftonville roared into the lead on 48 minutes through George McMullan who finished after Donnelly had headed down a Conal Burns cross.

But, a minute later, McVeigh levelled for DC with a bundled effort when Reds 'keeper Jack Duffin could only parry a shot on goal.

However, Cliftonville regained the advantage on 56 minutes courtesy of a simple Burns back post finish after Donnelly had delivered a precision cross.

Celtic came back again on 68 minutes after skipper Stephen McAlorum knocked the ball on for Eamon McAllister to rifle a low drive past Duffin.

Cliftonville: Duffin, Hutton, Donaghy, McMullan, Garrett, Johnston, Catney, Burns, Donnelly, Kane, McVeigh subs Fleming, M. Holland, C. Scannell, Smyth, Bannon

Donegal Celtic: Brown, Muir, Glenholmes, McAlorum, Gargan, Bradley, McAllister, P. McVeigh, McNamee, O'Hara, Dickson subs Fay, Atkinson, Carson, Burns, Curran

Referee: Brian Turkington (Belfast)

(Mukendi 70)

Michael Smith opened the scoring for Ballymena on 17 minutes when he got on the end of a Gary McCutcheon pass to send a right footed effort past Gavin Cullen.

Coleraine came closest right at the end of the first half when United 'keeper Ryan Brown spilled a David Scullion cross whilst under pressure from David Ogilby only for the ball come off an upright.

The Bannsiders levelled with 20 minutes remaining through Marc Mukendi who stooped to send a diving header beyond Brown after Stephen Carson - only on the pitch a matter of minutes - delivered the telling cross.

Coleraine: Cullen, Beverland, Harkness, Boyce, Knight, Scullion, Canning, Tommons, Lowry, Ogilby, McIvor subs O'Hare, Mukendi (replaced Harkness), Carson (replaced Tommons), Doherty, Healy

Ballymena United: Brown, Stewart, Haveron, Watson, M. Smith, Colligan, Taggart, McCafferty, Carson, McCutcheon, Surgenor subs Maybin, M.J. Smith, Lowry, Boyd (replaced Carson), A. Smith

Referee: Stephen Weatherall (Belfast)

LINFIELD 1 (Garrett 86)

Although scoreless at the break Linfield might have seized the advantage on 36 minutes when Jim Ervin sent over a looping cross for Mark McAllister who could only look on as his subsequent header struck an upright before falling to safety.

Linfield came close again ten minutes after the break when a sloppy Aidan Watson backpass missed his own 'keeper only to be cleared off the line by Stephen McBride.

The deadlock was finally broken with four minutes remaining when Peter Thompson released Michael Carvill to travel with the ball down the left flank before knocking it back from the byline for Robbie Garrett to thump into the top corner.

Crusaders: Keenan, McKeown, McBride, Magowan, Coates, Dallas, Morrow, Caddell, Owens, McMaster, Watson subs Halliday, Donnelly, Magee, Sweeney (replaced McMaster 61), Cassidy

Linfield: Blayney, Douglas, Gault, Murphy, Curran, Thompson, Tomelty, Garrett, Ervin, Mulgrew, McAllister subs Lowry, Carvill, Bailie, B.J. Burns (replaced Curran 8), Allen

Referee: David Malcolm (Bangor)