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Linfield celebrate title hat-trick

Published: Saturday 26 April 2008, 12.00CET
Linfield FC completed a hat-trick of Irish Premier League titles on the final day of the season with a comprehensive 3-0 victory away to Crusaders FC.
by Kenny Archer
Linfield celebrate title hat-trick
David Jeffrey won his sixth title in 11 seasons on Saturday ©Sportsfile
Published: Saturday 26 April 2008, 12.00CET

Linfield celebrate title hat-trick

Linfield FC completed a hat-trick of Irish Premier League titles on the final day of the season with a comprehensive 3-0 victory away to Crusaders FC.

Linfield FC completed a hat-trick of Irish Premier League titles on the final day of the season with a comprehensive 3-0 victory away to Crusaders FC.

Linfield celebrate
Second-placed Glentoran FC started the the day three points behind the leaders and with an outside chance of overhauling them, but despite winning 3-1 at home to Portadown FC, as was always anticipated Linfield were never in danger of missing out on their 48th league title. It was evident the league trophy, the Gibson Cup, would be staying at Windsor Park from an early stage of Saturday's matches.

Ferguson strikes
Glentoran fell behind to a seventh-minute goal from Portadown's Andy Smith and still trailed at the interval; meanwhile Linfield were two up at Seaview at the break, both goals coming from former Northern Ireland striker Glenn Ferguson, who netted in the 27th minute, and again shortly before half-time. Glentoran did turn their game around in the second half, with goals from Michael Halliday, Gary Hamilton and Daryl Fordyce, but it was never going to be enough, and Mark Dickson scored Linfield's third in the final minute to start the party started at Seaview.

Double ambitions
The title is the sixth in 11 seasons for Linfield manager David Jeffrey and is the first time any club has won three in a row since Linfield themselves won six consecutive championships from 1982 to 1987. Linfield now aim for a third consecutive League and Irish Cup double in the Irish Cup final against Coleraine FC. Tommy Wright, meanwhile, has stepped down as manager of Ballymena United FC after three seasons in charge. 

Last updated: 26/04/08 20.30CET

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