Title chasers Linfield coming back to town

Midfielder Raymond Foy challenges for a loose ball surrounded by Dungannon players.

Midfielder Raymond Foy challenges for a loose ball surrounded by Dungannon players.

Title chasers Linfield come to town on Saturday.

The Windsor Park club is challenging for league honours and sit just behind leaders Crusaders.

Ballinamallard manager Whitey Anderson knows games don’t come much harder than this.

“They are chasing the title after two barren years and they are still one of the biggest sides in the county,” said Anderson.

“They will obviously come looking for points to keep them in the chase and challenging. But we’ll be looking for point for much more different reasons.

“We need the points to remain out of the relegation zone and especially when we take on Warrenpoint the following Friday night,” said the Ballinamallard manager.

“At home to Cliftonville and Crusaders we were exceptional and getting points out of those games was brilliant and we’ve beaten the likes of Dungannon, Coleraine and Glenavon at home.

Our home form is good, but we’re still struggling in terms of putting points on the board,” said Anderson.

“Next week will be a big one against Warrenpoint but this one is just as important. We need to give 100 per cent and believe in ourselves again.
“We need to replicate our good home form of a few weeks ago and deal with the away fixtures in a better way so that we can move to a better position,” said the Ballinamallard manager.

Important players on the way back
Striker Anthony Elding came through 35 minutes of football on Saturday speed his return to top flight football.

Elding has been out of the game for nearly two months with a calf injury and his return will help strengthen Ballinamallard’s fire-power in the league run in.

Back too is central defender Leon Carters who played the full game against Dungannon. It was a new look back four for the Ferney Park side with Stafford, McMenamin, Crilly and McLaughlin all missing through injury or suspension.

“It’s good to have both Leon and Anthony back,” said manager Anderson. “They will add to the squad at different stages through the rest of the season.”

Winger Johnny Courtney has also made an impression in his two games, scoring his debut goal against Dungannon last week.

Midfielder David Kee also made a return on Saturday and also got on the scoresheet with a beautiful curling free kick.

Cathal Beacom has been training now for three weeks following his injury and could well be named in the squad to face Linfield on  Saturday.