Belfast Telegraph

Garrett is planning to delay Linfield's party

By Conor McLaughlin

Stephen Garrett is warning Linfield that Cliftonville are determined to delay their title celebrations — for a few days anyway.

Though denying the Blues a 50th League crown would in normal circumstances be cause for much rejoicing among Reds fans, the idea of giving north-Belfast rivals Crusaders a championship boost doesn't sit too well — which is why back-to-back wins against the title challengers would make for a perfect Bank Holiday weekend down Solitude way.

“We're only concerned about ourselves and our own results,” explained Garrett. “Linfield are in a very good position and if they do go on to win the League full credit to them, but we don't want it happening against us.

“Ideally, we will go to Windsor and get three points and then follow that up by beating Crusaders at Solitude on Tuesday. The way we're looking at it is that we have three matches left this season and we want nine points from them.”

The Reds have grown accustomed to a close-up view of title celebrations in recent times.

Last year, the Blues clinched the Gibson Cup thanks to a 1-0 defeat of Cliftonville while, 12 months previous, Glentoran earned the title with a last-day victory over the Solitude side and Garrett, who began his career with Linfield before enjoying a spell at Newry City, says he and his team-mates are determined to avoid an unfortunate hat-trick.

“All the pressure is going to be on Linfield this weekend,” he added.

“All the talk is about how a win for Linfield would see them crowned champions but a win for us would make sure of Europe.”

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