BEFORE the two-week circuit breaker much of the focus in the Danske Bank Premiership was on the top two of Linfield and Larne and whether or not the Inver Park Reds could dethrone David Healy’s champions.
Larne, backed by local man and owner of the real estate website Purplebricks, Kenny Bruce set the early pace in this season’s league campaign and are currently placed second, two points behind the Blues with a game in hand.
Linfield leapfrogged their title rivals with a 2-1 victory at Glenavon last day out at the same time that Larne suffered their first defeat in a 1-0 reverse against Ballymena United.
But, while many are wondering if recent County Antrim Shield winners Larne can win a first ever Premiership title and in the process knock Linfield off their perch, Stephen Baxter’s Crusaders have been hovering under the radar and right now look well placed to mount a concerted challenge.
The Crues are just three points off the summit and they could announce themselves as genuine contenders this weekend by defeating Larne at home to move into second spot.
Castlederg man Adam Lecky believes such an achievement would amount to a real statement of intent.
“We’re happy enough to be sitting under the radar,” said the towering Derg man.
“Before the Cliftonville game we produced three or four good performances whereas at the start of the season we were just grinding out results.
“The last three or four games we had clicked into gear, handing out tankings to teams that were down around the bottom.
“It was nothing to get carried away with but I felt we were finding our feet and settling into a style of play that really suited us.
“Any team is happy to be coming under the radar and the boss has said that himself. We’re happy enough to keep picking up points and staying in the title race. The other two teams are being talked up. Linfield have been there and done it and I suppose this year it’s all about Larne.
“We’ll hang in there and see where it takes us.”
FULL STORY IN THURSDAY’S STRBANE CHRONICLE
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Posted: 8:19 am January 23, 2021