Linfield 1 - 2 Ballymena United

Irish Cup - Round 6
Saturday, February 8th, 2014, 3:00 PM at Windsor Park
Referee: Raymond Crangle
Linfield Ballymena United

Philip Lowry (35) Allan Jenkins (25)
David Cushley (66)

Team Managers
David Jeffrey Glenn Ferguson

Starting Eleven
Jonathan Tuffey
Michael Gault
Mark Haughey
Andrew Waterworth
Philip Lowry
Michael Carvill
BJ Burns
Sean Ward
Jamie Mulgrew
Mark McAllister
Niall Quinn
Aaron Shanahan
Aaron Stewart
David Munster
Jim Ervin
Mark McCullagh
Mark Surgenor
Stephen McBride
Allan Jenkins
Gary Thompson
Darren Henderson
David Cushley

Matthew Tipton
Ivan Sproule
Matthew Clarke
Kyle McVey
Ross Glendinning
Michael Ruddy
Tony Kane
Alan Davidson
Alan Teggart
Michael McLellan

Matthew Tipton for Mark McAllister (72)
Ivan Sproule for BJ Burns (72)
Clarke for Michael Carvill (87)
Tony Kane for Mark Surgenor (61)
Michael Ruddy for Stephen McBride (78)
Michael McLellan for David Cushley (84)

Michael Gault Jim Ervin
Mark Surgenor

Red Cards
None. None.
Appearances & Goals To Date
Aaron Shanahan (GK) 5 apps -
Mark Surgenor 155 apps17 goals
Stephen McBride 10 apps -
Mark McCullagh 37 apps -
David Munster 91 apps5 goals
Jim Ervin 7 apps1 goal
Aaron Stewart 199 apps6 goals
Gary Thompson 74 apps11 goals
Allan Jenkins 105 apps19 goals
David Cushley 151 apps36 goals
Darren Henderson 7 apps2 goals
Michael Ruddy (sub) 43 apps1 goal
Tony Kane (sub) 102 apps6 goals
Michael McLellan (sub) 19 apps1 goal

Starting Lineup
Youngest Player:Gary Thompson (23 years 264 days)
Oldest Player:David Munster (34 years 358 days)
Average Player Age:28 years 140 days
Domestic Players:9 (81.82 % of starting eleven)

Matchday Squad
Youngest Player:Michael Ruddy (20 years 192 days)
Oldest Player:David Munster (34 years 358 days)
Average Player Age:27 years 32 days
Domestic Players:13 (81.25 % of matchday squad)

BALLYMENA United progressed to the quarter finals of the Irish Cup thanks to a superb 2-1 victory over Linfield at Windsor Park.

The hosts had more of the possession in the opening stages, Linfield midfielder Jamie Mulgrew went close with a couple of efforts without really troubling Aaron Shanahan in the United goal. The first real chance fell to the visitors with 25 minutes on the clock. Darren Boyce's head connected with David Cushley's corner forcing a superb stop out of Linfield goalkeeper Jonathan Tuffey. The resulting corner, again taken by Cushley, was met by the head of Allan Jenkins whose powerful effort beat Tuffey all ends up and nestled into the corner of the goal.

Instead of consolidating their lead, United conceded barely ten minutes later. Mark McAllister found Philip Lowry unmarked and in acres of space in the box to sidefoot the ball home and draw Linfield level ahead of the half time interval.

Andrew Waterworth threatened for Linfield with 50minutes on the clock, but Aaron Shanahan was equal to the ex-Glentoran striker's effort. United soaked up a spell of Linfield pressure before hitting the hosts with a devastating counter-attack. Gary Thompson found Darren Boyce in space on the right, who whipped in a delightful cross which was met by an equally impressive finish from David Cushley on the half-volley to send the sizeable travelling support into raptures. Cushley almost scored again barely a minute later but his audacious 40 yard volley flew just over Jonathan Tuffey's goal.

Darren Boyce then had a great opportunity to seal the game for United on 70 minutes but Tuffey was equal to his lob after beating the Linfield offside trap and racing clear. On 80 minutes, Aaron Shanahan pulled off a tremendous save to deny Matthew Tipton before substitute Ivan Sproule's shot hit the post as this frenetic cup tie neared its conclusion. Another late Shanahan save to deny Tipton signalled the end of proceedings as United progressed to the quarter finals on the Irish Cup, dumping out the trophy's most successful club in the process.

A home tie with Dungannon Swifts awaits in the next round on March 1st, however a more immediate concern is a huge league derby clash with arch rivals Coleraine at Warden Street this Saturday (3pm).

Match report written by Jordan Miller

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