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Ballinamallard United had to hit back, says Crawford

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Goal king: Andy Crawford is now gunning for Linfield

Goal king: Andy Crawford is now gunning for Linfield

©William Cherry/Presseye

Goal king: Andy Crawford is now gunning for Linfield

Andy Crawford feels Ballinamallard United had no option but to come out fighting after their 11-0 horrow show at Portadown.

Crawford made a big impact springing off the bench at Coleraine, scoring both of his side's goal in a 2-1 win which kick-started the healing process for the Mallards.

It could be a long time before another top flight side takes an 11-0 battering, but the painful memory of that nightmare will live long in the memory of Whitey Anderson's men.

United welcome Linfield to Ferney Park tomorrow lifted by the reality that they have restored some battered pride.

When their despair couldn't sink any lower there was no option for the players but to show their character and former Blues goal-getter Crawford led the fightback.

"The boys were embarrassed and cut up about what happened at Portadown, no question about it," said Crawford.

"It was just a horrible day at the office we never want to see repeated.

"It was important we fought back and got back to winning ways.

"The boys felt for Whitey (Anderson) too because after the game he couldn't summon up the strength to have a go at us he was so stunned.

"I think we had to conclude it was a freak result and now we can move on. You want this game to be about fun and enjoyment.

"Our lads would not have experienced anything like it.

"I lost a schoolboy match 13-2 but we started a man down and these things happen, you just don't expect it in the senior game.

"We were supposed to have a players' night after the Poradown game but that never happened.

"The stick and the abuse was always going to come but we'll remember that we only conceded three goals in the previous five matches before the Portadown game and we'll try to go back to that pattern. Getting back to winning ways was vital ahead of the Linfield game."

The Mallards could come up against Philip Lowry after the midfielder recovered from injury to feature for the Swifts in a 3-2 defeat to Glentoran II this week.

The Blues' line-up also included James Knowles, who netted one of his side's goals, Ross Glendinning, Jim Ervin, Reece Glendinning, Matthew Clarke and Bru McCaul.

Belfast Telegraph