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11 December 2020 22:44

Ballymena United F.C. Linfield F.C. Northern Ireland Football League Cup

nifl premiership

Larne defender Josh Robinson insists that, despite his side's unbeaten start to the season, Linfield remain title favourites and all the pressure is on his old club ahead of tonight's eagerly awaited top-of-the-table clash at Inver Park. The Blues, seeking a fourth Danske Bank Premiership title in five years under David Healy, enter this evening's fixture one point behind leaders Larne, who many are starting to believe can go all the way this term. Robinson, in excellent form at the back alongside fellow former Linfield ace Albert Watson, believes the winning mentality that was there when he won championships with the Blues and Crusaders now exists in the Larne dressing room. He adds that Tiernan Lynch's side have "a bit of everything" but points out nobody is getting carried away, even though they have collected 23 points out of 27 and won the County Antrim Shield in the opening months of the campaign. "We are doing well and enjoying our football," said the 27-year-old.

All the title pressure is on defending champions Linfield, insists Larne defender Josh Robinson ahead of top of the table clash

"Everything at Larne is so professional and that has shown in our performances. There is a lot of talent here which helps. "We are unbeaten but we don't really talk about that. It's all about the next game, and the Linfield game is a big one." Robinson knows all about the demands at Windsor Park. He says: "Linfield are up there every year whereas this is Larne's first time in this position. Linfield are favourites for the league and are the biggest club. Linfield are at where we strive to be. Read More "We don't fear them in any way and we are looking forward to the game. There is a great feeling around the place right now. Like I said, this situation is new to Larne and it is exciting, but the players know that we have to take one game at a time and get as many points as possible and see where it takes us." Asked about the dynamics that have seen Larne become title contenders, Robinson added: "There is a bit of everything in the changing room. There is talent, a lot of knowhow, experience and good young players. Being full-time also helps with our fitness compared to other teams. We do have everything in our squad to do it, but I'm not going to put any pressure on us because we don't need any extra pressure. "Linfield always have that pressure on them, and I felt that when I was there. They have to consistently win leagues. It was expected at Linfield to win the title. It's not expected at Larne. As long as we keep improving, that's what the gaffer (Tiernan Lynch) says, and it's what the owner Kenny (Bruce) says. The club are delighted at the progress we are making, so we don't have the pressure that Linfield have, and hopefully that is a bonus for us. "The winning mentality you need has been creeping into our changing room. You could see it in our recent results with last minute winners against Glenavon and Cliftonville. Those victories give people belief that in every game we can win, which is what you need. "We have the experience of Albert Watson and Jeff Hughes, which is vital, and we have boys who have won the league title like Conor Devlin, Tomas Cosgrove, Marty Donnelly, Andy Mitchell and myself, so there are winners who know what is required and it is about getting that right mixture." Robinson left the Blues in the summer but has nothing but respect for manager Healy and Linfield, saying: "I loved David and everything about the club. He was a great guy and a good coach, but I wanted full-time football and am getting everything that I want at Larne. "It was just time for me to move on. I wanted a new challenge and I had to make a decision and going to Larne was better for my family." Belfast Telegraph