Linfield boss Warren Feeney urges players to push-on following derby win

Warren Feeney salutes the Linfield fans after Wednesday's derby win
Warren Feeney salutes the Linfield fans after Wednesday's derby win

Linfield boss Warren Feeney believes Wednesday’s derby heroics can be the launchpad for greater things this season.

The Blues claimed a dramatic 3-2 victory over arch rivals Glentoran courtesy of Aaron Burns’ 95th-minute winner.

It completed a remarkable comeback for Feeney’s men, who had trailed 2-0 after 49 minutes.

Burns pulled one back before Peter Thompson drew the sides level.

And with virtually the last kick of the game, Burns doubled his own tally to snatch maximum points.

Now the focus will turn to Saturday’s trip to the North West to face Coleraine.

And Feeney has demanded more of the same from his revitalised Blues.

“I don’t mind admitting that last weekend’s defeat to Portadown was tough to take,” Feeney said.

“But we regrouped, and I kept telling the players to believe in themselves – and they did that on Wednesday.

“We showed great character and resilience, and I was so proud of the way the lads kept plugging away.

“Even when Jimmy Callacher got sent off, we didn’t defend and sit back. We kept pushing forward.

“But now we have to carry it on now. We have to play with a tempo and to our strengths.

“The players have got to believe what Linfield is about and handle the pressure.

“We will have to show that spirit and character. Maybe it is a good thing we are away from home for our first seven games. The players can express themselves.

“It is early days, but we have to take confidence.”

Feeney made his competitive as a 17th-minute substitute for Andy Waterworth on Wednesday night.

And the 33-year-old former Northern Ireland striker admits he relished the occasion.

“I was gutted I didn’t score,” Feeney added.

“People will question my age, but my game was blood and thunder. My game was getting around people and grafting.

“That’s all I ask of my players – be honest with me.

“I loved every minute of it. I ran and I chased – that’s me. That’s how I made a living over in England for 17 years.

“I said to the boys that they have to take a leaf out of that book and show desire.

“If I chase people at 33 then they can.

“I haven’t decided what I am going to do. I love playing and I felt good on Wednesday night.

“If needed I will put myself forward.