Linfield relishing clash with leaders says David Healy

Linfield Manger David Healy. Photo Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press
Linfield Manger David Healy. Photo Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker Press

David Healy sayd Linfield are relishing the trip to Danske Bank Premiership leaders Coleraine today.

The Blues are two points behind the Bannsiders and Healy is expecting a tough test against the unbeaten side.

Oran Kearney’s men have already picked up a win over Linfield this term and Healy is well aware of the threat they pose.

“We’re looking forward to going down there, I’ve a huge amount of respect for Coleraine as a club and Oran as a manager,” he said.

“You want to test yourself against the top teams, and they’re the top team at the moment.

“They caught us at a bad time in between games on our European run. We took it on the chin, they enjoyed their win and their celebrations. We’re still playing catch up.

“Coleraine are a good side. They have proved over the last few weeks that it’s going to be a difficult task for us on Saturday.

“We’re looking forward to the challenge, we relish it.

“It’s important that we prepare well so we are ready to go for what is a really big game on Saturday.”

The Blues go into today’s game at The Showgrounds in good form with three wins on the bounce, including a 7-0 demolition of Warrenpoint Town during the week.

Joel Cooper and Shayne Lavery were the tormentors in chief at Windsor Park against the point as the Blues ran riot.

But boss Healy believes there is still more to come from the deadly duo.

“I expect a lot from them, I expect them to be better even though they scored a hat-trick each,” Healy said.

“We started the game in a positive manner and were on form.

“I had prepared the players that Warrenpoint would be coming here to make it tough for us, which they did.

“But when you go about the game in the manner our players did our players can be hard to live with.

“Really pleased, the performance was there, the goals were there and we dominated from start to finish.

“But for their keeper we could have went in at half time out of sight.

“We had an idea Warrenpoint would come and get men behind the ball, so we had to make sure we created opportunities.

“In games like this it’s important you get goals at the right time, and Stevie Fallon got us a big goal at the right time.

“It was important we kept scoring late on in the game as sometimes it can fizzle out but the players kept going to the final whistle.”

Coleraine are also heading into the mouth-watering clash full of confidence as they moved top of the pile following their 2-0 win at Crusaders last week.

Oran Kearney has laid down a challenge to his side to see how long they can stay there.

“I wouldn’t say there is any spotlight you could be sitting fourth after Saturday’s games,” he said.

“I think we are joint top on goal difference with Cliftonville just a point behind.

“It is nice to reach the summit but as I said to the players in there the challenge is how long you want to stay there.

“It is in their hands and nobody else’s in relation to putting a bit of a run together now to try and stay there.

“It is panning out to be a four or five horse race and to me the league table never lies.

“If you want to see where you are at in an attacking sense, defensively and everything else the league tables pans out everything over the course of a season.

“When you look at how many teams are cluttered throughout it, how cluttered it is and the pattern of games to this date there have been a lot of teams that have beat each other.

“It doesn’t look like there is going to be teams that will steam ahead of everyone else it does look tight and the bar definitely has levelled out in relation to competitiveness,” he added.