Crusaders 0 Cliftonville 3
Ben Wilson celebrates Cliftonville's third goal
Rory Hale bagged Cliftonville's second goal at Seaview
Christopher Gallagher fired Cliftonville into the lead in the 18th minute
Cliftonville manager Jim Magilton embraces his assistant Gerard Lyttle
Paul Heatley in action for Crusaders
Cliftonville made light work of Crusaders at Seaview to claim their first derby win in seven attempts.
The Reds may not have enjoyed the best of starts to Jim Magilton’s tenure as manager, but they simply had too much energy, craft and technique for their north Belfast rivals on this occasion.
There’s usually fireworks when these teams go head-to-head, but apart from a few that were tossed on from outside the stadium, the Crues just failed to ignite.
Stephen Baxter’s team were out thought, out fought and basically out played over the 90 minutes.
Surprisingly, the Reds approached the fixture having picked up only one point from their previous League games, but they were miles better than their opponents all over the pitch and were certainly worth their win.
In fact, it was their first success against their big enemy since Boxing Day, 2019.
Midfielder Chris Gallagher shot the visitors into the lead before Rory Hale struck before the break.
When new striker Ben Wilson bagged a beauty just after the restart, there was no way back for Stephen Baxter’s side.
Baxter made two changes to the team that drew with Loughgall last time out, opting for Mal Smith and Jordan Forsythe in place of Jude Winchester and Ross Clarke.
Magilton surprisingly handed David Odumosu, on loan from St Patrick’s Athletic, the goalkeeping shirt in place of Nathan Gartside – the only change from the team that narrowly lost to Glentoran.
After theRead on belfasttelegraph.co.uk