Cliftonville skipper George McMullan not pressing any alarms just yet


George McMullan is confident Cliftonville can shoulder the weight of expectation as they set their sights on title glory.

The Reds suffered only their third defeat of the season on Tuesday against champions Linfield – a result that saw their lead at the top of the Danske Bank Premiership cut to six points.

With Cliftonville not playing until Monday night – in the live Sky game against Glentoran – second-placed Crusaders could reduce the gap once again when they travel to Glenavon 48 hours earlier.

McMullan admits there will be pressure on all of the club’s remaining 15 Premiership fixtures this season, but insists Tommy Breslin’s squad is up for the battle.

“If Crusaders win on Saturday our lead will be down to three points, even though we will have two games in hand. That will increase the pressure some more,” he said.

“But we have 15 games left and they will all be like cup finals. Every game will be massive.

“At the end of the day we would rather be where we are – six points clears and with a game in hand of Crusaders and Linfield.

“If someone offered us that position in January at the start of the season we would probably have laughed at them. It is a great position to be in.

“Tuesday was only our third league defeat of the season, and the other two times we lost we bounced back.

“So we will be aiming to bounce back again when we play Glentoran on Monday night.

“We knew it would be difficult to go the rest of the season unbeaten. We knew we would probably lose a game here or there.

“Well, we have done that against Linfield and now we move on.”