David Jeffrey hails 'proper clubman' who didn't feature in Reds' Irish Cup win

Photo showing David Jeffrey
David Jeffrey -Credit:INPHO/Brian Little

David Jeffrey has hailed Cliftonville legend Joe Gormley as a "proper clubman" after the Reds striker had to make do with being an unused substitute in Saturday's Irish Cup win.

The North Belfast club lifted the famous trophy for the first time since 1979 with a thrilling extra-time victory over Linfield at Windsor Park.

Sam Ashford cancelled out Ethan McGee's opener for the Blues to force extra-time, and Ronan Hale bagged a clinical double to send Cliftonville into dreamland.

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Jim Magilton made a number of changes during the game, but record goalscorer Gormley remained on the bench throughout the 120-plus minutes.

Photo shows Cliftonville’s Joe Gormley
Cliftonville’s Joe Gormley celebrates winning with the the cup -Credit:INPHO/Stephen Hamilton

Former Linfield and Ballymena United manager Jeffrey says Gormley could easily have moped on the sidelines, but instead he was a galvanising figure on the touchline.

"That is the sign of a true, proper clubman," Jeffrey told the BBC.

"Yes, there is always the self interest and 'what about me?', but today for Joe it is not about him. It is about his club and his teammates.

"And while he didn't play on the pitch, what he did off it in terms of encouragement and backing his manager, that speaks volumes of Joe.

"And he thoroughly deserves this."

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