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Match Centre

Premiership
Tuesday 21 December 2021 (kick off: 7.45 PM)

Venue: Windsor Park

Attendance: 2019

Referee: Tony Clarke

Linfield home-team
1 FT 0
away-team Ballymena United
  •   Christy Manzinga 77'
football
Christy Manzinga scores Linfield's winner ©Stephen Hamilton/INPHO

BLUES GO TOP FOR CHRISTMAS

A Christy Manzinga goal midway through the second half helped Linfield defeat Ballymena United at Windsor and move the Blues to the top of the table going into the festive fixtures.

Manzinga bagged what proved to be the only goal of the game on 77 minutes after latching onto Trai Hume's through ball to calmly lift his finish over United keeper Jordan Williamson.

Linfield applied some pressure during the opening exchanges with Matthew Clarke testing Williamson with a low cross while Manzinga flashed an effort just wide from outside the box.

Martin Donnelly then had a go from 20 yards after being picked out by Ahmed Salam before only a timely Steven McCullough tackle thwarted Trai Hume. Then, right on the stroke of half-time, Williamson saved at close range to keep out another Manzinga attempt.

Ballymena had their chances too, most notably just after the half-hour mark when Kenneth Kane ran onto a through ball only for his final touch to let him down.

The visitors came storming out of the blocks after the break, almost going in front within 30 seconds of the restart when Paul McElroy was blocked on the line by Hume.

Then, five minutes after that, the woodwork came to Linfield's rescue after Kane smashed a left-foot long range strike off the post after David Parkhouse had crossed from the right.

Linfield upped the tempo after that. Manzinga was blocked again by the visiting defence, Clarke sliced a shot over from Kyle McClean's right-sided ross, Salam saw a volley superbly saved by Williamson who followed that up with another stop from Clarke.

It was no surprise, then, when Manzinga did dink the ball past Williamson with less than a quarter-of-an-hour to go.

Ballymena did have a couple of chances to find the equaliser late on but Ryan Waide could only send a free-kick straight at wall while, deep into stoppage time, Brendan Barr fired over.

Linfield: Johns, Newberry, Shields, Callacher, Hume, Manzinga, Stewart, M. Clarke, McClean, Donnelly, Salam subs Walsh (not used), Roscoe-Byrne (not used), Mulgrew (replaced Donnelly 68), A. Clarke (replaced Manzinga 79), Palmer (replaced McClean 68), Carroll (not used), Archer (not used)

Ballymena United: Williamson, Redman, Wilson, McElroy, McCullough, Kane, Rodgers, Barr, McGrory, Parkhouse, Millar subs Johnston (not used), Chapman (not used), Waide (replaced Kane 78), Henderson (not used), Bramall (replaced McGrory 89), Graham (replaced Rodgers 78), Smith (not used)

  • FULL TIME
    Linfield   1 - 0 Ballymena United
  • red subsititutions  Substitution

    Andrew McGrory

    Ballymena United

    89'
  • green subsititutions  Substitution

    Daniel Bramall

    Unregistered Players

    89'
  •  Yellow Card

    Cameron Palmer

    Linfield

    85'
  • red subsititutions  Substitution

    Christy Manzinga

    Unregistered Players

    79'
  • green subsititutions  Substitution

    Andrew Clarke

    Linfield

    79'
  • red subsititutions  Substitution

    Kenneth Kane

    Ballymena United

    78'
  • red subsititutions  Substitution

    Christopher Rodgers

    Portadown

    78'
  • green subsititutions  Substitution

    Ryan Waide

    Ballymena United

    78'
  • green subsititutions  Substitution

    Sean Graham

    Ballymena United

    78'
  • GOAL

    Christy Manzinga

    Unregistered Players

    77'
  • red subsititutions  Substitution

    Kyle McClean

    Linfield

    68'
  • red subsititutions  Substitution

    Martin Donnelly

    Unregistered Players

    68'
  • green subsititutions  Substitution

    Jamie Mulgrew

    Linfield

    68'
  • green subsititutions  Substitution

    Cameron Palmer

    Linfield

    68'
  •  Yellow Card

    Kenneth Kane

    Ballymena United

    54'
  •  Yellow Card

    Douglas Wilson

    Ballymena United

    35'
  •  Yellow Card

    Michael Newberry

    Linfield

    29'
  •  Yellow Card

    Ross Redman

    Ballymena United

    19'

Linfield

  • Chris Johns
  • Michael Newberry 29'
  • Chris Shields
  • Jimmy Callacher
  • Trai Hume
  • Christy Manzinga red substitution 79' 77'
  • Jordan Stewart
  • Matthew Clarke
  • Kyle McClean red substitution 68'
  • Martin Donnelly red substitution 68'
  • Ahmed Salam

Substitutes

  • David Walsh
  • Sam Roscoe
  • Jamie Mulgrew green substitution 68'
  • Andrew Clarke green substitution 79'
  • Cameron Palmer 85' green substitution 68'
  • Adam Carroll
  • Joshua Archer

Ballymena United

  • Jordan Williamson
  • Ross Redman 19'
  • Douglas Wilson 35'
  • Paul McElroy
  • Steven McCullough
  • Kenneth Kane 54' red substitution 78'
  • Christopher Rodgers red substitution 78'
  • Brendan Barr
  • Andrew McGrory red substitution 89'
  • David Parkhouse
  • Leroy Millar

Substitutes

  • Sam Johnston
  • Lee Chapman
  • Ryan Waide green substitution 78'
  • Jack Henderson
  • Daniel Bramall green substitution 89'
  • Sean Graham green substitution 78'
  • Jonte Smith
© Stephen Hamilton/INPHO

Linfield

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Ballymena United

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