Sky Blues number one at Christmas as the clubs get set for Boxing Day derby battles

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Linfield face Glens at Windsor Park. Pic: NIFL.

Q Radio Sport

Ballymena United will be the Christmas number one in the Danske Bank Premiership.

The Sky Blues moved four points clear at the top with a 2-0 home win over bottom club Ards.

It was stalemate in the second against third battle at Windsor Park with Linfield and Glenavon finishing goalless.

Match of the day, possibly the year, was Institute's 6-4 victory against Cliftonville at the Brandywell.

Transfer target Michael McCrudden grabbed four goals for the Derry/Londonderry team - Rory Donnelly hit a hat-trick for the Reds and missed a penalty.

Visiting keeper Brian Neeson was sent off, so should be suspended for the Boxing Day clash with Crusaders. However, the Reds could appeal and are considering various options. 

Coleraine manager Rodney McAree enjoyed a 2-1 win at the Showgrounds over his old team Dungannon Swifts.

Crusaders beat Warrenpoint Town 3-1 at Seaview.

We've caught up with Point keeper Aaron McCarey after it was confirmed he's leaving next month to join League of Ireland champions Dundalk.

The ex-Wolves man says the club will survive without him, but they don't want to lose talented 26-year-old boss Stephen McDonnell...


Next up are the Boxing Day derbies.

Linfield face old rivals Glentoran at Windsor.


Coleraine go to Ballymena. 

Bannsiders boss Rodney McAree can't wait...

Cliftonville host Crusaders.

All Reds manager Barry Gray wants is a win...

Warrenpoint have Newry at the Q Radio Arena in the first Mourne Ultimatum Boxing Day derby.

Newry boss Darren Mullen says it'll be something special....

The Mid Ulster derby sees title-chasing Glenavon go to Dungannon.

The Swifts are managed by former Lurgan Blues coach Kris Lindsay.

Glenavon goalkeeper Johnny Tuffey expects a cracker...


Boxing Day, 3pm -

Linfield v Glentoran

Ballymena United v Coleraine

Cliftonville v Crusaders

Warrenpoint Town v Newry City

Dungannon Swifts v Glenavon

Institute v Ards




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