Belfast Telegraph

Irish Cup dresses up to impress everyone

By Billy Weir

Maybe it's just the end of the season and I'm a little giddy but well done to all concerned at BBCNI for their coverage of the Irish Cup Final on Saturday.

There were a few alarming moments, Stephen Watson-Live keeping up a fine cup tradition by donning a new suit for the day, in neutral blue. And how kind it was of Trigger to lend it to him for the day.

There was more sartorial excellence from Crusaders manager Stephen Baxter, who came dressed as a Ribena berry, was joined in the studio with NI boss Michael O'Neill who, out of shot, was eagerly noting down some valuable advice from the Seaview supremo.

"Forwards are only going to score goals when the ball is shoved up their shirts, as the man says," he said, and we were all wondering who this man was, perhaps it was the big hairy mascot in strange clothing looming behind Mark Sidebottom on the pitch? On closer inspection it turned out to be Alan Simpson.

As for the match, commentator Jackie Fullerton was welcomed by SWL who remarked it was a special anniversary for the silver fox with the golden microphone. Indeed, how he fondly remembers his first final, Cliftonville edged out on that day too by Moyola Park. In 1881.

Belfast Telegraph

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