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Park ages

Did you know that Cliftonville were the first and last visiting side to play at Moyola Park’s old ground – winning 3-0 on both occasions?

Tomorrow night’s League Cup second round clash in Castledawson will be the Reds’ maiden competitive outing at the Premier Intermediate League side’s new Mill Meadow home and the 18th meeting between the Clubs overall.

Indeed, Moyola Park are Cliftonville’s oldest surving opponents still in existence, dating back to that inaugural encounter to open our hosts’ eponymous home on Valentine’s Day in 1880.

A goalless draw at the same venue would follow 10 months later ahead of the teams contesting the first ever Irish Cup Final in April 1881, when Moyola emerged 1-0 victors.

The Reds exacted revenge of sorts with a 1-0 win at quarter-final stage two years later, with friendlies providing the platform for the next four clashes before a break of some 99 years passed until a Solitude friendly in 1994 ahead of Cliftonville enjoying a 3-0 League Cup success a few months later.

That game remains the Clubs’ last competitive fixture, with seven friendlies having been played in the 24 years since, including a 3-0 win in the final ever game at the old Moyola Park in 2009 and, two years later, a 7-0 success at the adjacent Mill Meadow, where the teams renew rivalries tomorrow.

Previous meetings
February 14, 1880: Friendly: Moyola Park 0-3 Cliftonville
December 27, 1880: Friendly: Moyola Park 0-0 Cliftonville
April 9, 1881: Irish Cup Final: Cliftonville 0-1 Moyola Park
April 7, 1883: Irish Cup Quarter Final: Moyola Park 0-1 Cliftonville
December 22, 1883: Friendly: Cliftonville 4-1 Moyola Park
March 29, 1884: Friendly: Moyola Park 1-1 Cliftonville
November 15, 1884: Friendly: Moyola Park 2-1 Cliftonville
August 31, 1895: Friendly: Moyola Park 3-9 Cliftonville
August 5, 1994: Friendly: Cliftonville 3-1 Moyola Park
February 4, 1995: League Cup First Round: Cliftonville 3-0 Moyola Park
August 4, 1995: Friendly: Moyola Park 1-2 Cliftonville
August 1, 2000: Friendly: Moyola Park 2-2 Cliftonville
August 5, 2003: Friendly: Moyola Park 0-4 Cliftonville
July 23, 2005: Friendly: Moyola Park 1-2 Cliftonville
May 23, 2009: Friendly: Moyola Park 0-3 Cliftonville
July 21, 2009: Friendly: Cliftonville 2-1 Moyola Park
July 7, 2011: Friendly: Moyola Park 0-7 Cliftonville