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Crusaders v Linfield Preview

The big games just keep on coming at Seaview and Friday night will be no different as Linfield travel across the city to play in the latest Danske Bank Premiership game of the season. Crusaders will look to extend their lead at the the top of the table while Linfield on the other hand will naturally look to close the gap so a colossus battle is in store for two teams on top form.

Crusaders will be looking to keep their good form going that has put them at the top of the Premiership and form that has only saw them beaten once this season. A brilliant 5-2 win over Glentoran and a good week of training has set the team up for this important tie and we wait to see who gets the nod given the performances by quite a few so far. Gerard Doherty shuld retain his spot in goals and Colin Coates could make a return after an absence through injury with Billy Joe Burns, Chris Hegarty and a pick of Michael Ruddy, Jarlath O'Rourke or Rodney Brown beside him. Howard Beverland will be ready to start if Colin Coates fails to make it as will Kyle Owens. Midfield may pick itself and expect Paul Heatley, Philip Lowry, Jordan Forsythe, Rory Hale and Ros Clarke in the mix to start with Declan Caddell, David Cushley Gary Thompson, Sean Ward and Paul McElroy all looking to challenge for the spots also. Up front it will either be Jordan Owens or Jamie McGonigle leading the line and both are more than capable of getting goals. Stephen Baxter will know that is not a title decider just yet but send his side out to win and put a marker down for everyone around them.

Linfield come to game also with one domestic defeat and the 7-0 drubbing of Glenavon last week show their intent in the Premiership also. They have key players all over the pitch and Crusaders will be wary of Mark Staffords finishing from set pieces, the skill of Bastien Hery in midfield and the finishing of Shayne Lavery up front. David Healy will want to win this one and will send a strong side on to the park to do just that. He will likely keep the side that won last week but could spring a surprise also to try and out wit the home side.

 So all set for what will be a cracker given past games. We want you there and we want you wearing Red & Black. Bring the songs and the noise and let Linfield know we are there and Seaview is a fortress. Admission is £12 & £8 and it is advised to arrive early as a large crowd is expected. Turnstiles open at 6.30pm and the game starts at 7.45pm. Crusaders supporters enter the Main Stand via the Creation turnstiles and the Harry Corry Stand via the turnstiles behind the McDonald Centre. See you there. Keep The Faith.

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