Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

We don’t fear Linfield: Boyd

Irn Bru's Zara Shaw keeps Linfield’s Matty Tipton (left) and Aaron Boyd of Coleraine apart as they aim to keep their hands on the League Cup

Coleraine forward Aaron Boyd feels his team have nothing to fear from Linfield after the sides were drawn together in the stand-out tie of the IRN BRU League Cup.

The Bannsiders have been the team to watch so far this season and are still on a high following that incredible Danske Bank Premiership victory over Portadown on Friday night when they came from three goals down to win 4-3 at Shamrock Park.

Currently sitting top of the league and making the next stage of the League Cup by way of a comfortable 4-1 success over Ballymoney United on Monday, Coleraine were one of the teams to avoid in yesterday's draw.

And from Boyd's point of view of being paired with the Blues, who have yet to really get started, it is a case of ‘bring it on'.

“It's not ideal to get the reigning league champions, but at the same time if you want to go and win the cup you have to beat the toughest teams,” said Boyd.

“We'll go into the game with no fear — obviously Linfield will get the respect that they get wherever they go but we'll certainly not fear them.

“We have had a good start to the season and there's no reason why we can't progress to the next round.”

That win over the Ports has been well documented and Boyd says it shows the fight that boss Oran Kearney has brought to the Showgrounds.

“It really gives us a massive boost. It gives belief — extra belief — that you can go a goal down to any team and still come back,” he added.

“We were three goals down and we had the quality and fighting spirit to go and take away not just one point but three.

“That's something that Oran has instilled — there's good camaraderie and you can see that on the pitch.”

Linfield striker Matty Tipton, who is struggling with a hip injury and is highly unlikely to feature in Saturday's first Big Two derby of the season against Glentoran, admitted it wasn't the best draw the Blues could have hoped for.

“Everyone would have wanted a home draw against one of the lower teams, the Championship teams, and then you look at what you want to avoid — Glentoran, Cliftonville, Crusaders.

“But at the minute going up to Coleraine on a Tuesday night — that's the toughest draw on paper that we could have got at this stage,” he said.

“But it's six weeks away and football has a funny habit of changing very quickly.”

Elsewhere holders Crusaders, who beat Coleraine in last year's final, play Carrick Rangers at Dixon Park, Ballyclare, while Cliftonville are at home to Ballinamallard and in-form Ballymena United host H&W Welders, who shocked Donegal Celtic.

Glentoran travel to Institute, Portadown go to Bangor, Glenavon take on Dergview at Mourneview Park and Lisburn Distillery are at home to Coagh.

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