Belfast Telegraph

Thommo aims to be Linfield's cup hero again

By Graham Luney

Peter Thompson has been the scourge of Glentoran for many years but the east Belfast faithful thought they had seen the back of the lethal hitman.

When Thommo left for Stockport County in the summer of 2008, long suffering Glens fans breathed a collective sigh of relief.

But now the Northern Ireland international is back in town to fuel Linfield dreams and give Glentoran nightmares.

Thompson will don a Linfield jersey again on Saturday after serving an automatic one-match ban against Portadown following his dismissal against Crusaders.

And these are the matches that a player of Thompson’s calibre usually delivers in — an Irish Cup quarter-final against Glentoran.

After all, he specialises in Irish Cup heroics, twice helping himself to a brace in finals against Glentoran and Coleraine as Linfield continued their love affair with the trophy.

“I was disappointed with the decision to send me off against Crusaders but I’m delighted to have the chance to play in this big game against Glentoran,” said Thompson.

“All the games are big ones at this stage of the season and the players are feeling confident about the way we are performing.

“We are looking forward to the games and hoping to go on a consistent run.

“The games against Glentoran are always very competitive and it’s important we get off to a good start — we must be at the races from the outset.

“I’ve won the Irish Cup three times and twice have managed to score two goals in the final so it’s a competition that means a lot to me and that has given me very special memories.

“While the FA Cup in England may have suffered a lot of criticism the Irish Cup still means a lot to supporters here and after the league title, it’s the big prize that teams dream of lifting.”

Thompson was devastated when the Irish FA rulebook prevented him from featuring in the County Antrim Shield decider against Crusaders but the Irish Cup is now a juicy carrot dangling in front of his hungry eyes.

“This competition has given me great career highlights and I will always respect it,” added Thompson.

“Even when I did not score against Dungannon Swifts in the 2007 final, it is special being part of a winning cup side. It’s a great feeling I’ll never forget.”

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