COUNTY ANTRIM SHIELD: Linfield charge past Reds to secure semi spot

Andrew Waterworth has three goals in his last four games. 
Photo Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press

Andrew Waterworth has three goals in his last four games. Photo Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press

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Linfield avenged their recent Danske Bank Premiership defeat by Cliftonville as they defeated the Reds 3-0 in the County Antrim Shield quarter-finals.

After an uneventful opening 25 minutes, the game showed a bit of life when Kirk Millar pinged a 40 yard pass over to Reece Glendinning down the right. Glendinning picked out Andrew Waterworth on the penalty spot but Cliftonville defender Caoimhin Bonner was alert to get a vital block in when the Linfield striker let fire.

Mark Stafford then had to be on his toes when Chris Curran picked up possession on the left, cut in and fired a powerful effort with his stronger right foot which Stafford was able to block.

Reece Glendinning was proving to be a useful outlet for Linfield down the right side and when he hammered in a dangerous cross Waterworth was inches from making the contact.

The deadlock was finally broken on 38 minutes when Matthew Clarke nipped in ahead of Tomas Cosgrove at the back post to poke home Andrew Waterworth’s low cross.

Cliftonville had a chance to level things up just before half-time when Curran fed the overlapping Aaron Donnelly to deliver a perfect cross which David McDaid headed over from 12 yards.

Minutes into the second half Linfield came close to doubling their lead when Sammy Clingan’s dinked free-kick to the back post was met by a Reece Glendinning headed which was well read by Cliftonville ‘keeper Jason Mooney.

Jay Donnelly then had a free header from Chris Ramsey’s attempted header from James Knowles’ corner, however Donnelly saw his effort acrobatically gathered by Gareth Deane in the Linfield goal.

Ross Gaynor pounced on a defensive blunder to double the lead and the victory was wrapped up

Caoimhin Bonner was given his marching orders before the visitors misery was compiled further when Andy Waterworth headed home Kirk Millar’s cross.

Meanwhile, PSNI defeated Albert Foundry 3-0 in Tuesday night’s other tie.