CLIFTONVILLE boss Jim Magilton knows exactly what to expect when his side make the trip to Stangmore Park to take on Dungannon Swifts on Saturday (3pm kick-off).

The Swifts inflicted the Reds’ last domestic defeat prior to Tuesday evening’s set-back against Linfield - their first defeat in 16 outings.

Magilton isn’t expecting a straightforward encounter against Rodney McAree’s side and has called for his team to show the character and resilience that he knows is in the group.

“I know exactly what we are going to expect there,” he said.

“They are a very good side. Give them time and space and they are going to hurt you. When the dust settles on this, obviously in the next few days there is going to be all sorts of questions, all sorts of scrutiny and all sorts of negativity – but not with me.

“At the end of the day, we lost a game of football now we’ve got to bounce back. What is more important for me is that we front up and show the character and resilience which is in the group.”

Magilton hopes to take lessons in bouncebackability from David Healy’s side that went into Tuesday’s encounter on the back of a heavy defeat of their own.

“We’re going to learn a lesson in terms of how a good side were beaten at Coleraine and then bounced back,” he insisted.

“We have to show the same sort of character that David’s team showed. As I’ve said many times, this group of players have been absolutely magnificent in terms of their levels of consistency. We dipped tonight and got punished for it. We have to move on quickly.

“We didn’t play as badly as we did on Saturday in the first half. We just weren’t as fluent, and we lacked a bit of courage in terms of getting on the front-foot. We had one or two opportunities which we could have done better in, but you have to credit Linfield for defending so well and playing so well tonight.”

The Reds’ boss was keen to heap praise on the players for their magnificent 14-game unbeaten run in the league and has called on them to stand up and be counted in their response.

“Let’s be very honest, these group of players have been magnificent,” he acknowledged.

“To go on this run of 14 unbeaten, at any standard it is a terrific run. Now we’ve had a setback. It is one game, a setback.

“Linfield had a setback on Friday night and bounced back. I expect a similar response in terms of our character and our resilience. They have been down the road many times and have shown that.

“This team have shown that this season. Again, we are going to be asked questions on Saturday against a really good side in my opinion and we have to stand up and be counted. There is no reason for us to start doubting ourselves, no reason whatsoever.

“This was a night where we were playing against a very good and experienced side who are hurting.

“We had a wonderful opportunity, and we didn’t take it. They nullified our threat and came out with a little bit more themselves and were deserved winners.”