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Crues get hands on a double after all

By Scott Young

Published 03/05/2016

Crusaders manager Stephen Baxter
Crusaders manager Stephen Baxter

It's that time of the season when awards are handed out to the outstanding performers and for me it should be a Crusaders double.

Stephen Baxter should be named Manager of the Yeay while Billy Joe Burns deserved to be crowned best player.

Gary Hamilton has enjoyed another fantastic season in charge at Glenavon - they can look forward to more European football and possibly two Irish Cup wins in three years - but if I was the manager who won the league title and guided Crusaders to their first back-to-back title wins I'd expect the top award.

Billy Joe is the Rolls-Royce at Crusaders and I love watching him bomb up and down the right wing and deliver perfect crosses for Jordan Owens and other strikers to do the rest.

The right back was already an outstanding player at Linfield, but he's now come to the Crues and won two titles so he's got the magic touch.

For the Young Player of the Year I've got to give an honourable mention to Glenavon's Mark Sykes and Linfield's Paul Smyth, but Lurgan Blues winger Joel Cooper deserves it for his contribution over the course of the season.

It's not surprising he has just signed a new deal at Glenavon as his performances have certainly caught the eye of everyone this season.

Belfast Telegraph

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