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Finish the job, proud David Healy tells Linfield players

By Graham Luney

David Healy has urged his Linfield players to complete their title mission this weekend and remain on course for a dream treble.

The Blues have already lifted the County Antrim Shield, are in the Irish Cup final and are now firm favourites to claim the Danske Bank Premiership title after leaders Crusaders stumbled against Ballymena United on Saturday.

Linfield, who are two points clear at the summit and with a vastly superior goal difference, will be crowned champions if they avoid defeat at Solitude.

Healy, who is back in the dugout after serving a six-match suspension, is relishing the prospect of the club's first championship success since 2012 and he's urged his men to finish the job in style on Saturday.

"It's a game we should all relish as a club and a team," said the Northern Ireland legend after watching his side thrash Coleraine 5-1.

"I'll be telling the players to pump out their chest because it's a big chance for them.

"I'll be back in the dugout on my best behavior - my suspension is over. The players have earned the right of giving themselves the chance of winning the league title. They have shown great resilience to go toe-to-toe with a really good Crusaders side for so long."

The Crues now need their neighbours to do them a massive favour while they set about tackling Glenavon at Seaview on Saturday. A 3-0 loss at Ballymena United looks to have ended hopes of a third consecutive title but defender Howard Beverland says his side will fight on.

"Technically it's not over but for each of us in the dressing room we probably feel that it is over but we'll do a professional job next week, raise our game and hope that things go are way elsewhere," he said. "Nobody is handing out any titles yet but it has swung a huge way towards Linfield, so we'll pick ourselves up."

Meanwhile, Jim Magilton has emerged as a surprise contender for the Cliftonville manager's job.

Belfast man Magilton has been Northern Ireland Under-21 manager and the Elite Performance Director at the Irish FA.

Other names being linked with the Solitude role, following the departure of Gerard Lyttle to Sligo Rovers, are Oran Kearney, Rodney McAree, David McAlinden, Gavin Dykes and even former Reds chief Tommy Breslin.

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