FOOTBALL: Coleraine to meet Crusaders this Saturday

SUPPORT...Oran Kearney pictured with the parents of Neil McFerran and Aaron Davidson to lend his support to the Gis A Hug Foundation.
SUPPORT...Oran Kearney pictured with the parents of Neil McFerran and Aaron Davidson to lend his support to the Gis A Hug Foundation.

Coleraine WILL face Crusaders on Saturday.

Linfield goalkeeper Alan Blayney’s call up to the Northern Ireland squad spared the IFA blushes of another embarrassing own goal!

The big shot stopper yesterday joined Nigel Worthington’s squad for the Euro 2012 qualifier away to Serbia on Fri-day.

His promotion – due to an injury sustained by Birmingham’s Maik Taylor – meant that Saturday’s potential Carling Premier League showdown between Linfield and Crusaders was postponed.

An IFA Emergency Committee meeting was scheduled for last night to probe the Premier League fixture farce that threatened to derail the final five games of the campaign.

Clubs were facing with the prospect of competing in a round of ‘post-split’ fixtures this weekend, even though the top and bottom sections have yet to be confirmed.

But Blayney’s international recognition eased the pressure on red-faced IFA members. Crusaders will now travel to the Coleraine Showgrounds, which will complete the clubs’ original fixture schedule. There are still outstanding post-split games, but they have no bearing on the eventual outcome of a top six place.

“It was a bit of a mess,” said a spokesman. “Thankfully, it was sorted out without having to bring the clubs’ representatives together again.” Linfield now face a demanding three week period, starting with a league visit to rivals Glentoran on Friday, April 1.

The teams will meet again in the Irish Cup semi final at Windsor Park on April 9 – before reconvening at the Oval in another crucial league clash on April 16.

David Jeffrey’s boys when then meet Crusaders on Tuesday, April 19.

This Saturday’s fixtures will now go ahead as originally scheduled, this means that Coleraine will entertain Crusaders.

Carling Premiership – Saturday 26 March 2011

Cliftonville v Glentoran

Coleraine v Crusaders

Dungannon Swifts v Glenavon

Lisburn Distillery v Portadown

Newry City v Ballymena United

Donegal Celtic and Linfield will have no game this Saturday.