STEWART STRIKE ENOUGH FOR LINFIELD
Linfield put an end to their recent downturn in form with victory over leaders Cliftonville at Windsor Park.
Christy Manzinga might have opened the scoring with just over ten minutes on the clock when he burst through on goal after Cliftonville had surrender possession but with only Declan Dunne to beat he lifted his left-foot shot over the crossbar.
The Blues came close again midway through the first half after Kirk Millar and Jamie Mulgrew combined for the latter to send a low drive goalbound that was blocked before being cleared.
Then, not long after that, Jimmy Callacher came even closer with a thumping header against the crossbar, again from a Millar delivery.
Cliftonville's first effort of note came just before the half-hour mark but Jonny Addis' close range header from a Levi Ives cross was directed over.
What proved to be Linfield's winner came five minutes after the break. A great cross from left by Ahmed Salam was met by Jordan Stewart who got into a bit of space to guide a header past Dunne and into the net.
It took until the 84th minute for Cliftonville to muster a goal threatening response but, from Chris Curran's cross, Paul O'Neill could only head past the far post from close range.
Linfield: Johns, Roscoe, Shields, Callacher, Millar, Hume, Manzinga, Stewart, M. Clarke, Mulgrew, Salam subs Walsh (not used), Newberry (not used), Fallon (replaced Salam 62), Donnelly (not used), A. Clarke (not used), Marshall (not used), Green (replaced Manzinga 90+3)
Cliftonville: Dunne, McDermott, Ives, C. Curran, R. Curran, McDonagh, Lowe, Donnelly, Addis, Gormley, Turner subs McNicholas (not used), O’Neill (replaced McDermott 54), Foster (not used), Casey (not used), Coates (replaced Ives 86), Kearns (replaced McDonagh 67), Morgan (not used)