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Standard issue for Jim

As pleased as he was to begin his tenure with three points, Jim Magilton insists Cliftonville can improve upon yesterday’s performance against Glenavon.

Three first-half goals – with Joe Gormley netting either side of a close range strike from debut boy Sean Stewart – saw the Reds kick the new Sports Direct Premiership programme off in impressive style, however the Manager is firmly of the belief that his team still have plenty of gears to climb.

“I’m delighted for the players,” he said.

“There was a lot of nerves and a lot of tension as you would expect for the first game of the season, but it was good to get off to that start. All in all, I’m pleased, though we’ve certainly got more work to do.

“It’s a good start but it’s only a start. I think we all have expectations of being so much better than that.

“I thought we got sloppy in the second-half and we could have been punished for that. Nathan Gartside has made a couple of big saves to keep our clean sheet intact and you never know what can happen if you concede one, things can change after that.

“We had lots of good performances all over the pitch and I don’t want to be critical – I just think we can be better.

“I have a lot of belief in these players. I’ve seen them train, I’ve seen them play in pre-season and we have a way of wanting to play but we were careless at times. These guys set the standards. We just send them out but they set the standards and at times, we were sloppy.

“We could have been more ruthless and we have to be more ruthless with the opportunities we created because we might not get away with that against other opposition and that’s no disrespect to Glenavon whatsoever, I thought they put an unbelievable shift in but I know that we have more in us.

“I want us to be better but, overall, of course I’m happy. Three goals, a clean sheet and three points is a good start for us but I think we can and will be better in the future.”