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Carrick Rangers 1-0 Cliftonville

Cliftonville produced a flat display en route to a below par defeat against Carrick Rangers this afternoon.

After an off-colour first-half that saw Richard Brush save well from Daniel Kelly before Conor McDermott brought an excellent stop out of Harry Doherty at the other end, the Reds began the second period with a greater sense of urgency and did have the ball in the net only for Jamie Harney’s header to be ruled out for offside.

Having been grateful to Brush for a number of timely interventions, the visitors eventually fell behind on 65 minutes when substitute Lloyd Anderson hooked in amid a goalmouth scramble.

Cliftonville’s response to that setback rarely amounted to anything of note and, though a McDermott corner almost sneaked in at the near post, Gers keeper Doherty was barely troubled as the Reds failed to hit any sort of sustained standard and, indeed, were unfortunate not to fall further behind as the hosts wasted a plethora of late openings.

Cliftonville: Brush, McDermott, Breen, Harney, C Curran, R Donnelly, McCrudden, Doherty, Maguire, McMenamin, A Donnelly. Subs: Dunne, Ives, R Curran (McCrudden, 68 mins), Foster, Wilson, Bagnall (C Curran, 65 mins), Gormley (Maguire, 68 mins).