Lisburn Distillery boss Tim McCann said he has not been made to feel under pressure at the club but admitted a “great sense of relief” following his side’s deserved victory over Donegal Celtic at the weekend.
Still without a league win this season, Celtic slumped to three second-half goals from Michael Halliday, Jordan Hughes and Gary Liggett.
It could have been a different story had Celtic’s Darren McNamee and Shane Dolan not squandered gifted opportunities to level before Hughes’ 87th minute strike helped the Whites leapfrog Celtic at the foot of the Danske Bank Premiership.
McCann said: “I am relieved at the result. With a one-goal lead we were nervous and I thought Celtic would capitalise. We left it late to score the second but when it came I knew we had the game buried.
“I have always been confident in the players’ ability and in this game they threw everything at the ball and showed great commitment. It’s a big win for us and I have no doubt our season will kick on from here.
“We were waiting to click and when a team has players of Michael Halliday’s and Gary Liggett’s calibre, I knew we would. Everyone is on board and we can go on a run now as long as we stick together.”
Celtic’s caretaker manager Declan McGreevy, who released long-serving midfielder Liam Bradley before the game; and defender Anto Lagan after it, said: “The players are devastated. We have had highly emotional day when more than football was being dealt with right up to kick-off and that’s never ideal preparation.
“We will pick ourselves up from this. It was not a three-nil game. The horizon is not dark and gloomy, it is getting brighter and we will become a better, stronger unit.
“I am not going to get overly concerned by this result. I have no doubt we will bounce back from this defeat.
“We have a long way to go in the season with a lot of points to be won and lost. We have to start picking up as many as possible.
“But I am confident our fortunes will start turning. We have not had the rub of the green this season but that will change – I have no doubt about it.”
It appears McGreevy has been named as Celtic’s caretaker manager while he aims to get recognised coaching badges. However, the club will have only around 60 days before confirming an A-license coach as official manager.