After living dangerously during the opening 45 minutes, Cliftonville took control after the interval to pocket all three Danske Bank Premiership points against Portadown at a sodden Shamrock Park this afternoon. Skipper Jason McGuinness blasted home the opener ahead of substitutes Davy McDaid and Stephen Garrett putting the seal on the Reds' 10th consecutive victory over the Ports. It was, however, the hosts who looked the most likely to make the breakthrough during a first-half when they time and again threatened to make Cliftonville pay for some less than convincing passages of play. After Aaron Haire had gone close, defender Garry Breen looked certain to find the net only for goalkeeper Jason Mooney to make a wonderful diving stop to claw the ball off the line. Opposite number Chris McGaughey got his angles right to thwart Jude Winchester and, after Matthew Parker had forced Mooney into another smart stop, Stephen Hughes sent a low drive whistling just past the post. The Reds had shown flashes of their quality in fits and starts during the first-half but exerted greater dominance after the turnaround and went close to netting through Daniel Hughes, whose attempt was repelled by McCaughey with Jay Donnelly able only to steer his follow-up into the side-netting. McGuinness made no mistake just before the hour, though, when he thrashed out a leg to hook home from close range after his initial header from James Knowles' corner had been blocked. McDaid swept home the second from close range after Winchester had taken advantage of a defensive mix-up and, with Winchester and Jay Donnelly both prevented from adding to Cliftonville's tally by McCaughey, it was left to Garrett to register number three when he thundered an unstoppable drive into the top corner in injury-time.
Better by half
Portadown 0-3 Cliftonville
Jaimie McGovern holds off Aaron Haire; Jason McGuinness takes the acclaim after opening the scoring and (right) Jude Winchester is fouled by Garry Breen
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Caoimhin Bonner Chris Curran Davy McDaid Stephen Garrett Gary Donnelly
  
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Jason Mooney Jaimie McGovern Levi Ives Jason McGuinness James Knowles Martin Donnelly Daniel Hughes Ruairi Harkin Jude Winchester Jay Donnelly Tomas Cosgrove