Cliftonville Football Club pays its respects to Keith Alexander 11 years on from his untimely death.
The former Northwich Victoria, Peterborough United and Macclesfield Town boss was a popular figure among the Reds’ support and always spoke fondly of his brief spell at Solitude during the 1994/95 campaign, during which he played a key role in helping the Club secure their place in the inaugural Premier League.
Despite having hung up his boots and assuming the Assistant Manager’s role at Mansfield, the St Lucia international was coaxed out of retirement by Marty Quinn and, though little was expected of him during a short loan tenure, he would go on to make an incredible impact at a Club with whom he retained very close links throughout the rest of his life.
He scored on his debut as Cliftonville claimed a memorable 4-3 victory over Portadown at Shamrock Park on January 14, 1995 and claimed his next goal when he emerged from the subs’ bench to mastermind a thrilling comeback against Glentoran at The Oval.
His finest night in a Red shirt, however, came with a two-goal blast as Cliftonville eliminated Linfield from the League Cup at the quarter-final stage at Windsor Park on February 28 and, though he always spoke of his regret at never finding the net at Solitude, his contribution to the Club’s turnaround in fortunes in the mid-nineties cannot be understated.
He returned to north Belfast for friendly games as Manager of Ilkeston Town and Lincoln City – receiving a standing ovation on each occasion – and attended the Club’s 125th Anniversary Dinner at Belfast City Hall in 2004.
While he represented many Clubs as both player and Manager throughout a distinguished career, his name will always be synonymous with Cliftonville FC for anyone lucky enough to have seen him play for us and, on this most solemn of anniversaries, we once again give thanks for the memories, the iconic goals, the great nights and for always being a friend to our Club.