Match Day 26 in the Danske Bank Premiership gives us a smashing game as Crusaders play Linfield in a game that could prove significant in the race for the title. Crusaders have quietly gone about their business after an indifferent start to the season and sit just three points behind Linfield and two points behind Ballymena United at the top and a win will make it even tighter at the top.
Crusaders have had a great week training and we wait to see if there are any tweaks to the starting eleven that took the field last week against Newry City. Howard Beverland, Michael Ruddy and Mark McChrystal could all be available again after injury so the defence could change if any are selected to play alongside Colin Coates and Billy Joe Burns. Midfield has a large pool to choose from and Paul Heatley, David Cushley, Jordan Forsythe, Rory Hale and Philip Lowry could keep their place leaving Declan Caddell, Matthew Snoddy, Ross Clarke and Reece McGinley starting on the bench. Up front Jordan Owens should lead the line again but Rory Patterson is ready if called on and of course Ronan Hale will be bursting to get on the pitch to show what he can do. It will certainly be a strong line up and they will be ready to give this one a real go knowing what the reward is come approx 4.50pm.
Linfield lead the Premiership and have shown good form but again they are wary of the Crusaders threat and will set up accordingly. They are also strong all over the park and David Healy will send set his team up to counter what Crusaders throw at them. Linfields main threat will come from in form Andy Waterworth although they have match winners else where and Crusaders defence will be kept busy through the game. Linfield have won both battles so far this season but they know Crusaders are a different beast now and are expecting a much closer game.
So all set for a fantastic game and it looks like a sell out (3pm kick off). A few home terrace tickets remain available and are expected to be snapped up before kick off. With a full capacity we ask you to arrive early to help with gaining entry and follow any instructions stewards may give out. All we ask is that you make it noisy and colourful and give it your all from the stands and the team will react. Sing Loud Sing Proud and let everyone know you are there. Be the difference and get behind us from the start. Keep The Faith.