Linfield hoping to bolster their squad with returning stars

David Healy is hoping his Linfield squad will be bolstered by some players returning from injury in the coming weeks.

The Blues, who head to Larne for a crucial league clash tonight are starting to see a number of stars resume training after a spell on the treatment table.

Michael Newberry and Niall Quinn came back into the squad for the 1-1 draw with Warrenpoint Town last Saturday, with the latter getting some minutes under his belt.

Healy is hoping it is the start of several players returning ahead of the busy festive period for the reigning champions.

Linfield boss David Healy

“I’m not one to come out with sob stories about players being missing,” he told the club website.

“We played our strongest available team last week.

“You always want a bit more in and around the squad. We’re short at the minute in terms of numbers and maybe in experience and knowhow.

“But the players have dug some good results out of late. There’s been some good performances and some okay performances.

“It’s important to have a fully fit squad, we haven’t of late.

“It was good to get Niall Quinn minutes last week, he has been a mainstay for us in the last few seasons.

“We want everyone fit and available, and the sooner they are the better.”

Healy was frustrated by last week’s draw with the Point, but he felt the opposition deserved credit as well.

“We didn’t have that edge to go and get that second or third goal and ultimately in the end it cost us two points.

“Overall we lack that determination, hunger and urgency.

“It is hard when teams come and sit in and frustrate. Sometimes you have to hold you hands up and praise the opposition for how they’ve set up against us.

“But I thought with the balls and territory we had in the second half we should have been doing a little bit better.

“The players worked hard but we just couldn’t put ourselves in that golden position.”

Now it’s off to Inver Park for Linfield, and Healy is expecting another tight game following their draw there in October.

“It’s a tough game for us, but it will be a tough game for Larne as well,” he said.

“These are the types of games that drive supporters and players.

“We’ll be mentally and physically prepared, and it will be a challenge for both sides.”