Mallards shoot down champions at Windsor
Published: 6 Oct 2012 18:10
Goals from Campbell, Curran and Martin sent the travelling support home in joyous mood as they move up to third in the Premiership.
With confidence high among the players and supporters of the Mallards following four wins in a row, they went into the long awaited visit to Windsor Park hopeful they could upset the odds and they can now boast the scalp of Linfield.
With Leon Carters starting a suspension following his dismissal against Glenavon, Whitey Anderson was forced into a defensive reshuffle. He drafted in Craig Hill at the heart of the defence alongside Mark Stafford for his first league start of the campaign.
Linfield started well in the opening minutes and forced two corners, but it was the visitors who took the lead with just four minutes on the clock. Stuart Hutchinson won a crunching tackle just inside the Linfield half and the ball broke to Andy Crawford. He carried the ball towards the penalty area before sliding the ball to the in form Ryan Campbell, who made no mistake with the finish.
Linfield continued to edge the possession statistics and on 21 minutes Alvin Rouse had to touch a header over the crossbar. Three minutes later Linfield should have equalised, but Daryl Fordyce volleyed wide from close range.
At the other end Andy Crawford headed wide from a Chris Curran cross and Campbell was adjudged to have strayed offside when he looked to be through on goal.
On 39 minutes the equaliser finally arrived. Davy Kee was booked for a lunge on the left wing and the defence failed to deal with the resultant cross, leaving McCaul to tap in from inside the six yard box.
At the start of the second half Linfield dominated the early exchanges but the Mallard defence held strong and they looked dangerous on the break. Crawford had an opportunity but chose to cut back inside instead of shooting and the chance was gone, and moments later Campbell had a shot from 20 yards saved.
Stafford make a goal saving block to keep the scores level and just before the hour mark the visitors took the lead when Chris Curran beat the offside trap and finished cooly into the bottom corner.
As the clock ticked down the vocal support from the travelling support increased in volume, and just as the fourth official raised the board to signal five minutes of injury time substitute Martin put the result beyond doubt and spark huge celebrations in the North stand.