Linfield boss David Healy sent out a chilling warning following his team’s demolition of Dungannon Swifts by stating, ‘the best is yet to come’!
Quick-fire first half goals from Joel Cooper and a late strike from Andy Waterworth compounded to the Swifts’ woes following manager Rodney McAree’s exit just 24 hour earlier.
To make matters worse, the result helped dump the beleaguered County Tyrone side to the bottom of the Danske Bank Premiership table – they replaced Warrenpoint Town who nicked their first win of the season against Cliftonville.
Although Healy had a huge grin on his face at the end, he admits there is still a lot more to come from his impressive Blues.
“I’ve got to be pleased, but I think the players looked a wee bit leggy at times,” said the former Northern Ireland striker.
“We are nowhere near our peak fitness levels yet. Once we hit that, hopefully we will start dominating games a bit more.
“Dungannon came to make it difficult for us – the first goal was really important.
“Once we got the second goal, it relieved a bit of pressure . . . we didn’t have to go and break them down.
“I thought our attitude was good – it was a solid and professional. Dungannon wanted to play which was a credit to them and I think we picked them off a few times when they over-played.
“We were by far and away on top of the game, but you are not just going to turn up and roll teams over.
“In our last home match, we huffed and puffed against Ards and failed to break them down.
“So was good Joel managed to get a couple of goals before the break and then Andy came off the bench to nick his usual goal.
“Defensively, we have been good. We have conceded only one goal all season and even that was disappointing when we were down to 10 men (at Cliftonville).
“The players have been terrific but I keep telling them it’s about maintaining standards.
“We need to keep improving game on game. Games are now coming thick and fast.
“I always challenge the players, telling them it showtime at 3pm every Saturday. That’s when they earn their money and so far, they have been doing that.”
Terry Fitzpatrick was given the responsibility of taking over from McAree, but only on a temporary basis because he hasn’t got the necessary coaching credentials to be given the job on a full-time capacity.
“I only found out on Thursday night I would be in charge,” said Fitzpatrick, who brought a 25-year playing career to and end last April. “As a Dungannon man through and through, I would never see the club stuck. I can only take the post for 60 days because I haven’t got the proper coaching badges.
“But I would love to be in charge for 60 days. It’s up to the club’s Board.
“I will probably be here for a few weeks, that’s unless something crops up soon. Applications for the post close on Friday.
“I don’t think anyone expected too much from us regardless of our situation. Losing Rodney had a massive effect on the club – he was more than a manager. He was a friend and colleague.
“He was also a big player in the youth academy at the club.
“But we have to move on as quickly as possible, collectively as club. Dwelling on things will not get you anywhere.
“The goals came from three lapses of concentration – basic errors. But I don’t think we were under the cosh for 90 minutes by any stretch of the imagination.
“When you play here you can’t switch off. Two goals in two minutes killed us – we were punished for mistakes. You can’t afford to do that at places like this.