Fear factor drives Jeffrey on

LINFIELD manager David Jeffrey has revealed a fear of failure drives his team on to greater heights.

The Blues clinched a third consecutive double on Saturday with a 2-1 win over Coleraine in the Irish Cup final at a sun-splashed Windsor.

The cup is Jeffrey's fourth as manager to add to his six league titles plundered during a glorious 11-season reign in south Belfast.

Deep in the bowels of Windsor, famously adorning the home changing room door, a sign warns 'Don't enter if you don't fear failure'.

And Jeffrey insists it is exactly this sentiment which inspires his team to the rarefied heights they have occupied over the last few seasons.

"This is the best ever, no-one can take this away from this team," beamed Jeffrey.

"Certainly what we've done will never be repeated. It will never be repeated in my lifetime, I can never see it being done again.

"We're going to enjoy this day, enjoy and reflect on this.

"But you don't get carried away. This game is fantastic when you're up but awful when you're down.

"I already know what it feels like to win nothing, it's a powerful feeling, I don't want to feel that.

"It's not about a great desire to be a winner, it's a greater fear of being a failure.

"No-one can dare say we're a failure and every season we want to be successful.

"I don't think they (the players and staff) even realise what they've done. I'm very, very proud.

"To tell you the truth, I don't know how to put it into words.

"It is an incredible achievement and the players went out and answered their critics. I think the word maybe is satisfaction.

"This Linfield team will take some beating. But it's also about the people around you.

"Brian McLaughlin, faithful, unbelievable assistant manager, tremendous backroom staff and the players are superb.

"You're only as good as the people around you and what we've achieved is absolutely remarkable."

Paddy McLaughlin fired Coleraine into a deserved first half lead before a second half Peter Thompson brace steered the Blues to victory.

Coleraine counterpart Marty Quinn said the half-time whistle saved Linfield and Jeffrey admitted the performance was markedly better when they emerged from the break after introducing Mark Dickson to the fray.

"To be brutally frank and honest, we were totally outplayed in the first half," added Jeffrey.

"Once they scored, they outpassed us, outplayed us, outfought us, out worked us, moved the ball about and we were lucky to go in just one goal down.

"I didn't go roaring from the touchline, they wouldn't have heard us. I thought it was just time for analysis and we thought about making the change.

"Paul McAreavey hadn't been overly well this week and as willing as he was, he just wasn't getting there and I thought (Tommy) McCallion and (Marty) Hunter really were bossing it.

"I thought Mark Dickson was excellent when he came on and second half, we did really well, played some great football and I thought it was an excellent cup final.

"Usually they are a wee bit tepid and a bit boring, I thought it was an excellent game of football.

"Second half wasn't just about Peter Thompson, obviously he scored two fantastic goals and you need someone of that ability in your side but I thought the character they showed was absolutely immense."