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Healy backs players to stay focused and set up £1m match

 

By Steven Beacom

Linfield manager David Healy is confident that his side will handle the pressure and not be distracted by any thoughts of playing Celtic when they face little La Fiorita at Windsor Park in the Champions League tonight.

On the eve of the first qualifying round first leg clash, Healy (right) was adamant his team's only focus was on the side from San Marino not Scotland.

Northern Ireland's record goalscorer acknowledged that he is not surprised there is so much talk and hype about a potential clash with Celtic, which could generate up to £1m for Linfield in Uefa prize money, gate receipts, advertising, merchandising and revenue from TV rights, but made it clear that the Bhoys had not been mentioned once during his training sessions leading up to tonight's fixture.

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"All we have been concentrating on is playing La Fiorita. That's it. Our only focus is on the game at home against them and the return leg next week," said Healy, who is without injured defender Jimmy Callacher tonight.

"They will be given the utmost respect because they are champions of their country, as are we. On the training pitch we have only talked about doing our job."

 

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