A little bit of history was made in yesterday’s pre-season friendly with Newry City when Cliftonville contested their first fixture on the site of the Club’s original home ground in 131 years.
Cliftonville Playing Fields – more commonly known as The Cricky – was the Reds’ base between formation in 1879 and the formal move to the adjacent Solitude in 1890.
Prior to yesterday’s contest, which saw Levi Ives and Joe Gormley on target in a 2-0 win, Cliftonville’s previous outing at the venue was a 7-0 defeat to London Caledonians in a friendly way back on April 10, 1890. Three days earlier, meanwhile, the Club’s final competitive fixture ended in a 4-3 reverse at the hands of Glentoran in a Charity Cup quarter-final tie.
Historians and trivia buffs alike may, however, wish to note that while the Club’s original home was at Cliftonville Playing Fields, the pitch itself did not lie on exactly the same site as the ground’s current artificial surface but was, in fact, situated on the elevated area where Sacred Heart Primary School now stands.
Cliftonville’s own synthetic pitch will, meanwhile, makes its debut when the Reds host Ards in a pre-season friendly on Tuesday night.
Admission to Solitude – where kick-off is set for 7.30pm – will be £7 standard and £5 for concessions, with Members entitled to free entry upon production of a 2020/21 Members Card.