Belfast Telegraph

Linfield go top as Blues' new signings impress: All you need to know about the weekend's Irish League action

Linfield are on their own at the top of the Danske Bank Premiership table as the only team to keep up a 100% record after three games.

They saw off Crusaders at Seaview on Saturday afternoon, while there were also wins for Ballymena and Institute. There were two draws, late equalisers in each, as Coleraine denied Glentoran and Cliftonville denied Dungannon.

Here's everything you need to know about the weekend's fixtures:

Crusaders 0-2 Linfield

Goals from Joel Cooper and Jamie Mulgrew ended a run of five consecutive Crusaders wins in this fixture as the Blues bagged a deserved win at Seaview.

Tempers frayed during a tense first half, after which Linfield held a one goal advantage. The opener was a well-worked move when it arrived 35 minutes in. The impressive Daniel Kearns fed in Chris Casement, who slid a perfect cross onto the six-yard-line for Joel Cooper to finish off his second goal for the club.

It was two on 56 with another fine goal, this time Jamie Mulgrew poking home a ruthless finish after a strong run from Joel Cooper was followed by a pass to match.

The Crues came close to halving the deficit mid-way through the half when Matthew Clarke smashed his own crossbar and from the corner that followed, Jordan Forsythe nodded wide when he should at least have been on target.

In the end, it was a deserved win for the Blues, whose new signings Cooper and Kearns impressed - adding plenty of flair and entertainment to David Healy's side.

Glentoran 2-2 Coleraine

Glentoran were denied the win by a later Bannsiders equaliser at the Oval.

Brad Lyons put the Bannsiders in front, profitting from Darren McCauley's latest telling set-piece as he headed the corner past Elliott Morris, who couldn't keep the effort out despite getting a hand to it.

The game was turned on its head after the break when Curtis Allen converted Dylan Davidson's free-kick to level and Peter McMahon put the hosts ahead, blasting home a spectacular 30-yard effort.

The Glens were denied a win by Eoin Bradley, his header again set-up by assist specialist McCauley, whose crossed was nodded home by the substitute.

Dungannon Swifts 1-1 Cliftonville

Dungannon were another side denied all three points as the Reds netted late.

Former Glenavon winger Mark Patton seized on a Jamie McGovern's attempted clearance to lob a helpless Richard Brush just after the hour-mark.

A first victory of the season, however, was denied to the Swifts by Jay Donnelly. He put the finishing touches to a neat late move, firing home Joe Gormley's square ball.

Ards 1-2 Ballymena United

Ballymena United came from behind in Bangor to go level with second spot on seven points.

It was a former United frontman who opened the scoring in the first-half, Mark Kelly taking advantage of some slack defending to pounce and fire home.

David Jeffrey's visitors need not have worried. Two curling efforts in the second period sealed the points. The leveller came from James Knowles and the winner from Shane McGinty, both with their first goals for the club since joining the Showgrounds side this summer.

Institute 2-0 Warrenpoint Town

The North West side are in fifth place after another impressive victory, making it two wins from three games.

Michael McCrudden scored his second of the season to open the scoring before the break, firing home from the penalty spot after he had been fouled. By that time, the visitors were down to 10 men when Danny Wallace was sent off for a late tackle on Jamie McIntyre.

McCrudden and Institute's tally was doubled midway through the second half when he dispatched a sweetly-struck half-volley to seal Stute's second win of the campaign.

Newry City 1-2 Glenavon

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