'He's got a bit of ooh la la': David Healy backs 'quality' Hery and Lavery to be big players for Linfield this season
If there were two positives for Linfield to take from Tuesday's Champions League defeat to Rosenborg, they were the two new recruits.
French midfielder Bastien Hery started just a day after being unveiled as the Blues' newest signing while Northern Ireland U21 international Shayne Lavery came off the bench to add an extra attacking threat against what was an experience defence chock-full of international caps.
While obviously disappointed to lose the game, Blues boss David Healy tipped both to make a big impact in the Irish League this season.
"I thought Bastien was good," he said of the 27-year-old, who arrives at Windsor Park from Waterford. "He's got a wee bit of ooh la la, a wee bit of French quality.
"We knew that when we brought him here. I've watched him numerous times for Waterford. There's obviously the connection with Pat (Fenlon) at the club.
"He was one of the very first players I saw when I went down to Bohemians against Waterford a couple of years ago and I was thinking he's got a wee bit. You keep on top of him and thankfully we got him through the door.
"Thankfully we got him in in time to start tonight and he was a huge plus, as was Shayne Lavery when he came on.
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"I toyed with starting Shayne through the middle but I thought Andy Waterworth's workrate was exceptional. When it comes to big games, Andy's the man I go to and I thought he was terrific.
"Shayne came on and gave us the energy, the fizz that I know he has and he'll certainly be a big, big player for us this season."
Healy also said that his players had gone into the game determined to win and that they'll do the same in Norway next Wednesday, July 18.
"I hate going into the game in the mindset of thinking, clubs do it in the Irish League and it frustrates me at times, that we have nothing to lose when we come to Windsor Park, it's a free one," he said.
"I never ever give the players that mindset to say they're miles ahead of us, there's no pressure on us.
"Champions League football is 10 months of graft last year so they deserve the opportunity tonight.
"Of course Rosenborg are a class above.
"I certainly can't fault the players' effort. We were basically beaten by a better team and sometimes you hold yours hands up.
"Next week, we need to win 3-1. It will be tougher, I've absolutely no doubt about that. They've have a strong, proud home record in Europe.
"Maybe in the back of their minds they're leaving Belfast thinking it's job done. Hopefully that's the case and we could catch them. Football has a habit of throwing up freak results and performances so I'll be preparing the players to have a decent go at them and hopefully win the game."
Belfast Telegraph Digital