Cliftonville 5 Coleraine 0
Cliftonville's Joe Gormley scored a hat-trick against Coleraine
Joe Gormley wasted no time getting back in the goal routine with a devastating hat-trick to help Cliftonville sweep Coleraine aside at Solitude.
Out injured for the majority of the season to date, the ace marksman celebrated his return to the starting line-up in style, with strike partner Ben Wilson helping himself to a double amid a relentless display from Jim Magilton’s side.
One up at the break, the Reds laid siege to the Bannsiders’ goal after the interval and their endeavours were rewarded time and again en route to their biggest win of the season so far.
Injury forced home boss Magilton into two changes from the starting XI that had accounted for Crusaders and Ballymena United over the course of the previous week, with former Glentoran and Linfield full-back Conor Pepper slotting in for Kris Lowe, Joe Gormley – whose own comeback from injury saw him feature from the bench in both of those games – replaced Sam Ashford up front.
For the visitors, livewire Lee McLaughlin – who played a telling role in Friday’s comeback victory over Glentoran at the BetMcLean Oval – was handed a starting position in place of the suspended Dean Jarvis, with Oran Kearney otherwise sticking with the same team as his side joined their hosts in chasing down a third consecutive victory.
Traditionally something of a goalfest, both of last season’s Premiership encounters between the Reds and Bannsiders at Solitude finished 2-2, as did BetMcLean Cup and Irish Cup engagements, with the sequence coming to a conclusion when Cliftonville got the better of their visitors in the European Play-Offs.
This latest showdown – postponed from September 9 due to bothRead on belfasttelegraph.co.uk