We gave it our best shot against top team: Carroll
Roy Carroll says Linfield can be very proud of their spirited showing against Celtic after the Hoops left Windsor Park with a 2-0 advantage going into the rematch at Parkhead on Wednesday night.
Two goals within six minutes in the first half from Scott Sinclair and Tom Rogic threatened a rout but a stunning defensive performance from the hosts, coupled with several sensational saves from keeper Carroll, frustrated Ulsterman Brendan Rodgers' Invincibles.
Carroll modestly deflected attention away from his own shot-stopping heroics and hailed his side's organisation and work-rate against a top class side.
"We knew it was going to be a difficult game, Celtic are a good team and would have a lot of the possession but the players gave it 100 per cent and it was a huge effort from a part-time side against a full-time one," said former Manchester United keeper Carroll.
"You have to be outstanding playing against big teams like Celtic and I had a few saves to make. Credit to the back four, they kept them out for most of the game but we're disappointed with the goals we let in.
"It's great for the players to have those big games like the Irish Cup Final and the players are growing up quick.
"The whole 90 minutes I felt the boys worked hard against good players."
Carroll urged supporters to cut out the missile throwing after Leigh Griffiths was targeted but he preferred to praise the vast majority of fans who enjoyed the historic first meeting between the clubs.
"The fans were great today - both sets of fans - and it was great to see Linfield make arrangements for the Celtic fans in the Kop," he added.
"As you know Celtic never took the tickets and it would have been nice to see more of them there. Both sets of fans were good and incidents happen sometimes. It was a small section and you can get that."