Belfast Telegraph

Aaron in mood to snatch the Burns bragging rights

By David Mason

Linfield midfielder Aaron Burns admits there may be an uneasy silence with his twin brother Andrew over the breakfast table this morning.

They may well share a bowl of cereal and a plate of toast, but their family ties will be severed for 90 minutes at least on the opening blast of Ross Dunlop's whistle at Stangmore Park.

Both players approach the Danske Premiership clash with their own agenda.

Aaron will be hoping to keep the Blues at the top of the table, while Andrew will be doing is utmost to help Dungannon Swifts - under new boss Rodney McAree, who replaced Darren Murphy this week - claw out of relegation trouble.

"I'm sure there'll be a bit of banter over breakfast and we'll have a bit off craic travelling to Dungannon in the car together," smiles Aaron.

"But once the game starts, we both have our jobs to do. Dungannon have gone through the process of changing manager this week. I'm sure the players will want to put on a show for McAree.

"Although Andrew was sad to see Darren leave, he has a lot of faith in Rodney."

Linfield go in to the game in the best possible shape following their midweek (3-1) County Antrim Shield win over Cliftonville. It was Burns' extra-time double blast that sealed the deal.

The result also put a smile on the face of Blues' new boss David Healy as he enjoyed his first victory at Windsor Park since succeeding Warren Feeney.

"That's 12 goals for the season for me," beamed Aaron. "They couldn't have come at a better time.

"It was a tough match, there were a lot of tired legs at the finish.

"But our fitness levels are super. The gaffer told us to keep doing what we were doing.

"I thought we dominated the second half. We were thrilled with the win and the goals were a bonus.

"Andy (Waterworth) got a good touch for my first one. All I needed to do was get a boot on to it.

"I think Andy thought his initial shot went in. He actually turned his back, but didn't realise that I got the final touch. It was definitely my goal."

Aaron's second strike was even more significant. Not only did it finally kill off the Reds, but it ended a horrible, missed penalty jinx.

Burns squandered from the spot against Carrick at the weekend and Waterworth repeated the act in the first half of the Shield tie.

"I just hit the penalty as hard as I could. I missed one on Saturday - it happens," added Aaron.

"We decided that Andy would be on them after that. But when he missed again, I managed to get the ball off Stevie Lowry and thankfully it went in.

"It's vital we now take that form into our league games - that's our bread and butter. We haven't been great in our last few games. Fingers crossed, we can take three points at Stangmore Park."

It was Healy's third game in charge in possibly the most difficult position in the league, but Burns insists he's already seen enough to suggest he'll be a winner.

"This is Linfield Football Club . . . it's pressure from day one," he adds. "David has played at the highest level, he knows what pressure is all about.

"The players know he'll do his utmost to bring success to the club.

"I have to say David has been great since he came in. He'll need a bit of time and he'll implement his own ideas as he goes along.

"Everyone is 100 per cent behind him -the boys all love playing for him. It's only a matter of time before his ideas and strategies come across."

Belfast Telegraph


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