Linfield striker Guy Bates was thrilled with his team’s Europa League win against NSI Runavik - but insists the job has still to be finished!
Bates enjoyed a sensational debut by bagging a priceless second goal for Warren Feeney’s team after new skipper Andy Waterworth had shot the Blues into an early second half lead.
They’ll now make the journey to the Faroe Islands next week, odds on to claim a place in the second round.
But Bates insists nothing will be taking for granted.
“We’ll approach next week’s game exactly the same way we approached the first leg,” said the former Glenavon man.
“We are under no illusions. We know it will be tough. But we’ll have another week’s training under our belts. If we put in the hard work, we’ll see where it takes us.”
Bates’s wonderful individual goal had the home faithful drooling. He was given a standing ovation when he was reeled in by his boss two minutes from time.
“The reaction I got from the fans was absolutely brilliant,” he added.
“Let’s hope there is more of that to come.
“It’s always pleasing to score. I really enjoyed the goal.
“I managed to get past a couple of defenders and spotted the gap. I was thrilled to see the ball go into the net.
“But I’m a big believer in the team comes first. I was just delighted with the win and also the clean sheet which to my mind is the most important thing when you play in Europe.
“It was an excellent team performance. Once we got going in the second half, I thought we were really impressive all over the park.
“Big Ross (Glendinning) made a couple of superb saves, but that’s the kind of luck you need in games like that.”
Bates, signed controversially from the Lurgan Blues a few weeks back, stressed he is relishing the prospect of linking up with Andy Waterworth on a regular basis.
“We worked on one or two little things in training,” he added. “I’m sure as the weeks go on, we’ll work a lot more together.
“I’ve only been back in the country for one week, so we’ve only had three of four sessions together. But we talk a lot on how we can compliment each other.
“We are both in the same category. We don’t mind who is scoring the goals as long a the team is winning.”