IRISH LEAGUE: Linfield boss David Healy insists his players will be fired up following Shield agony

Linfield chief David Healy
Linfield chief David Healy

Linfield boss David Healy insists he has “no worries” about lifting his players for the Danske Bank Premiership clash against Dungannon Swifts at Windsor Park on Saturday.

The Blues are still smarting from their midweek County Antrim Shield final defeat to Ballymena United – the first time they’ve been beaten since November.

Healy believes the result will help galvanise the team as they chase down Crusaders at the top of the table

“I told the boys to get their heads up – they are Linfield players,” he said. “We now have a big game against Dungannon Swifts to deal with.

“It’s back to league business – our form has been good of late. Yes, we are disappointed with the Shield result, but it’s now history. We can’t afford to dwell on it. I never get carried away by winning games – and I certainly don’t intend to become disillusioned when losing.

“The chase to catch Crusaders is still very much on. It moved up a notch after our win over them a few weeks back. Hopefully, it can continue right to the end of the season.

“Dungannon will look forward coming to Windsor. They are on a good little run at the minute, so we know it will be a difficult job for us. But if we turn up with the right mindset – and produce the form I know we are capable of, we should be ok.”

Healy admitted he is not a fan of back-to-back games but, with another trip to Ballymena looming next week, it means that the teams will have met four times since December 19.

“I knew the drawbacks,” he said. “The law of averages will say you can win them all, so hopefully, the Shield defeat gets that out of our system. It’s now vital we hit a winning trend again, firstly against Dungannon and again against Ballymena next week.

“Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to win the Shield, especially for the people who trusted me by appointing me manager of this club – and also for the supporters. But we still have the Irish Cup coming up and we are certainly not throwing in the towel in terms of our title chances.”