Dean Smith enjoyed a string of silverware across his playing career but the sight of Annagh United sitting top of NIFL Championship One must hold special significance.
Although Smith is the first to highlight the perfect start enjoyed by Annagh covers just three league games, he admits a mood of optimism around the Tandragee Road club at such a positive start to life in the Irish League’s second tier.
“We are certainly going to enjoy things but all the credit must go to the players,” said Smith. “It is a great boost for everyone connected to the club but we are only three games into the season and every team can expect ups and downs.
“What we can focus on is the team spirit which has been so crucial and something we know will remain in place during any difficult periods.
“We finished with just nine men against Donegal Celtic’s ten on Saturday but came away with the win due to team spirit.
“That trust in each other will get us past so many tests.”
Annagh’s momentum will suffer a temporary setback on Saturday with a free date due to the Bob Radcliffe Cup in the competition calendar.
“It probably comes at a bad time but will allow some players to recover from any knocks,” said Smith. “We arranged a midweek friendly with Broomhill to give other players minutes and will probably now give the guys the weekend off.
“Although it is all about the group, I was delighted for Matty Brown to get our goal last weekend after so many injuries problems and setbacks last season.
“Our shape has been consistent this season and we have been able to create.”