There wasn’t much action in the first 20 minutes or so but the visitors were just edging it and Johnny Tuffey was called into action in the 21st minute when Andy Waterworth sent a low cross into the 6 yard area and the Glenavon keeper got a vital hand to cut it out with Caolan Marron clearing the loose ball.
Four minutes later Waterworth’s shot from the edge of the ‘D’ had Tuffey diving to his left to tip it past the upright.
Aaron Burns put Linfield ahead in the 32nd minute when he was adjudged onside as the ball was played forward and he rifled a shot into the roof of the net from inside the box.
The first yellow card of the game arrived in the 38th minute when Ciaran Martyn was cautioned for a late challenge on Matthew Clarke. Two minutes later Mark Stafford had the ball in the net but it was correctly ruled out for a hand ball in the build-up.
Two minutes before the break Andy McGrory rose at the far post to get his head on Mark Patton’s cross but, under pressure from a defender, he could only direct his header straight at Roy Carroll.
Kyle Neill picked up an injury in the 54th minute and had to be replaced by Andy Kilmartin, forcing a reshuffle in the Glenavon defence, Patton moving to left back, McGrory moving to left midfield and Mark Sykes to right midfield.
Referee Stephen Taylor awarded a penalty to Glenavon in the 62nd minute as Mark Stafford blocked Andy McGrory’s cross with his arm and the Glenavon spot-kick specialist stepped up to send Roy Carroll the wrong way and draw Glenavon level.
The equaliser certainly gave the home side a lift and Guy Bates and Greg Moorhouse linked up well in the 66th minute but a slightly heavy touch by the latter allowed the ball to run through to the Linfield keeper.
Five minutes after the equaliser Ciaran Martyn was sent off after seeing a harsh second yellow for a late challenge on Ross Gaynor, much to the surprise of most in the ground.
Linfield regained the lead against ten man Glenavon in the 76th minute and there was more than a stroke of good fortune for the Windsor men as Sean Ward’s shot, which was heading well off target, fell perfectly to Andy Waterworth and his shot took a flick off the boot of Kris Lindsay which totally wrong-footed Tuffey and the ball ended up in the back of the net.
Glenavon: Tuffey (c), Neill, Canning, Lindsay, Patton, Sykes, Marron, McGrory, Moorhouse, Martyn, Bates. Subs: Hamilton, Kelly (Bates 72), Kilmartin (Neill 54), O’Mahoney, Gray (Canning 80)
Linfield: Carroll, Haughey, Stafford, Callacher (c), Millar, Burns, Ward, Lowry, Clarke, Gaynor, Waterworth. Subs: Stewart (Millar 75), Casement, Fallon, Amuneke, Carson
Referee: Stephen Taylor
Glenavon Man of the Match: Greg Moorhouse