Belfast Lord Mayor Niall O Donnghaile made a surprise appearance at the Irish Cup Final on Saturday.
The Sinn Fein councillor witnessed Linfield thrash Crusaders 4-1 at Windsor Park in their sixth League and Cup double in seven years.
Mr O Donnghaile’s visit to a football ground once regarded as a ‘no-go’ area for nationalists wasn’t the first by a Sinn Fein politician — Sports Minister Caral Ni Chuilin attended a Northern Ireland game against the Faroe Islands last August.
And in March, deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness paid his first visit to Windsor Park in nearly half a century to see Derry City play Linfield.
It was the latest in a number of sporting gestures, after First Minister Peter Robinson watched the final of GAA’s McKenna Cup between Derry and Tyrone in January.