Michael Gault ready to fight ‘tooth and nail’ for title glory

Linfield captain Michael Gault
Linfield captain Michael Gault

Michael Gault is ready to fight “tooth and nail” for title glory this season – and with it send manager David Jeffrey out on a high.

The Blues trail champions Cliftonville by one point as the race for the Gibson Cup continues to gather pace.

Gault insists the appetite for success is as insatiable as ever at Windsor Park – regardless of last week’s bombshell news surrounding boss Jeffrey.

The 51-year-old is set to stand down at the end of the season, bringing the curtain down on 17 success-kissed years at the Linfield helm.

Thirty trophies have been claimed during that stellar reign, with the chance of earning two more before the current campaigns draws to a close on April 26.

Gault has spent his whole playing career under the guidance of Jeffrey, and he would love to give the outgoing boss the perfect farewell gift.

Despite emotions running high following last week’s announcement, Gault insists the club’s focus remains steadfast on reclaiming the Premiership title.

“It is business as usual,” he said.

“We went out and got a good 6-0 win over Ballinamallard last Saturday, and we have trained hard this week ahead of Friday’s game with Glentoran.

“We are all determined to win the league title, and that hasn’t changed since last Saturday’s news.

“Obviously, I want to see the manager go out on a high, and that means winning the league title. He is the only manager I have ever played under, and I regard him as much more than just a manager to me.”

Jeffrey issued his own battle cry following last week’s demolition of Ballinamallard.

The determined boss hit out at those rivals who have questioned his side’s character this season – insisting the Blues are ready for battle.

“We are all up for it – it is going to be a fight to the end,” Gault said.

“We have 10 league games remaining, and they will all be cup finals. We will be fighting tooth and nail to get our hands on the Gibson Cup.”

Linfield have advertised for the position of first team manager on the club’s official website.

Applications are to be submitted before Monday, March 10.

A number of high-profile names have already been linked with the post, including St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright, former Hibs boss Pat Fenlon and Ballymena United manager Glenn Ferguson.

Wright this week ruled himself out of the running, while Ferguson has distanced himself from the job.

Former Blues midfielder Fenlon this week admitted he was “open to offers”.

Another name that has been linked with the role is former Northern Ireland striker David Healy.

But on Thursday night a source close to Healy admitted the country’s record goalscorer was not in the running to succeed Jeffrey.

“David is still undertaking his coaching badges and that is what he is focused on at the minute,” the source said.