Linfield hero Jamie Mulgrew angrily dismissed suggestions that Glentoran had made it easy for the Blues in their 3-1 Irish Cup quarter-final victory.
Mulgrew was on target in the comfortable success but he said he and his team mates deserved credit for their performance, rather than the emphasis being placed on the Glens’ inadequacies.
“It may have looked easy to some people but I certainly didn’t feel that way,” said Mulgrew.
“I came off that pitch absolutely knackered and I’m sure the rest of the boys would say the same.
“So to make that comment, I would certainly disagree with it.
“Whether it’s Scott Young or whoever else, they might say that but I would disagree.
“It was a hard fought game. We are overjoyed with the result as you would be.
“To win 3-1 at The Oval against your biggest rivals is a big, big achievement and obviously thinking back to where we were before Christmas, it’s a big turnaround.
“I think it proves that we have character and slowly but surely we are learning to deal with the pressure that comes from playing for Linfield Football club.
“The pressure that is put on players once you pull on that jersey is something you have to accept if you want to be at Linfield Football Club for a number of years and if you want to win medals.
“I don’t regret it and I actually relish the pressure that is put on me and I know the rest of the boys are playing with a smile on their face now.”
The mood was a far cry from what was felt at the end of last year when with a few points being dropped in the league, there were calls from some Bluemen to give boss David Jeffrey the boot.
But that particular pressure has subsided a little thanks to a great recent run of form.
“Football is a very strange game,” added Mulgrew.
“Before Christmas people were talking about a new manager maybe coming in and people going and new players coming in but I think this shows the togetherness we have in our squad.
“We haven’t won anything yet and there is a lot of hard work to go yet but I think a lot of teams would like to be in our position.
“It’s about us staying there, holding on to the lead we have in the league and pushing on to try and get into another cup final.”
There was one downside to the day for the Blues.
Kris Lindsay, who has suffered horrible luck with injuries, was forced off after taking a crack to his face in the last minute of the game and has since been diagnosed with a fractured jaw which requires an operation this week.