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Linfield v Crusaders: League clash postponed due to Windsor Park stadium damage

By Adrian Rutherford

This weekend's top of the table Irish League clash between Linfield and Crusaders has been postponed because of safety concerns at Windsor Park.​

It is the first big casualty of the problems which emerged at the international stadium earlier this week.

On Tuesday it was revealed that cracks have appeared in the structure of the West Stand.

It has put a series of big games in doubt, including next month's Irish Cup final and Northern Ireland's Euro 2016 qualifier against Romania in June.

Already confirmed off, however, is this weekend's big local football game between Linfield and Crusaders.

The Crues are nine points clear at the top and could have all but claimed the title with a win over second-placed Linfield.

A statement from the Northern Ireland Football League this morning said: "The NI Football League can confirm that the Linfield v Crusaders Danske Bank Premiership fixture scheduled to be played on Saturday 4 April has been postponed due to the health and safety concerns with the West Stand and the surrounding area at Windsor Park.

"The arrangements for the rescheduling of this fixture will be announced in due course."

Today's announcement may also put a question mark over Linfield's next home game against Glenavon on April 11.

It is understood that Kingspan stadium, the home of Ulster Rugby, is a potential venue for Northern Ireland's game with Romania.

Crusaders manager Stephen Baxter told the Belfast Telegraph: "I think it was inevitable when we heard about the damage to the stadium.

"It was something we had been prepared for."

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