Irish Cup: Healy challenges squad ‘to add to Linfield legacy’ after 3-1 semi-final win over Glens

David Healy celebrates after the match with goalscorer Joel Cooper
David Healy celebrates after the match with goalscorer Joel Cooper

Linfield manager David Healy has challenged his squad to “add to the Linfield legacy” after their 3-1 Irish Cup semi-final win over Glentoran.

Kyle McClean’s double, after Joel Cooper’s opener, helped the Blues progress at the Oval, Junior having made it 2-1 with his second-half goal.

“Everyone talks about the other great players and great teams,” said Healy.

“I’m asking our players, ‘can we go and be a part of the history’. My job at the forefront is adding to the legacy.”

“I’ve spoken to the players, saying ‘can you add to the legacy of this football club’, as traditionally we have won so much.”

Linfield already have the BetMcLean Cup in their trophy cabinet, trail Larne by two points in the league and will now face the winners of Saturday’s second semi-final between Larne and Cliftonville in the Irish Cup final on 4 May.

“There have been a lot of questions asked about us, me and the players this year, where we are going to go, we’ve won the League Cup and we’re in the Irish Cup final.

“We’re probably big underdogs in the league, we’ve got to rein the champions in and we look forward to a push at that. This gives us an opportunity for a big final early May.”

Healy was fulsome in his praise for the performance of his side at the Oval on Friday night.

“I thought we were very good. I thought when they got it back to 2-1 it flattered them.

“We were good value going in 1-0 ahead at half-time, we should perhaps have been two, if not three, in front.

“For the second half we asked the players about managing the game and I thought we did that, albeit we conceded the goal when we were 2-0 up.

“But Kyle McClean, what a hit, what a goal at an important time. And then we see the game through.

“When you come to your nearest rivals and put in the magnitude of the performance we did tonight you have to tip your hat to the players.”

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