Irish Premiership: Cliftonville 5-0 Glenavon

Five star Reds go three points clear

Cliftonville are odds-on to retain their Irish Premiership crown after hammering Glenavon 5-0 at Solitude.

With closest rivals Linfield being held at Portadown, the champions are three points clear with just two games left.

Joe Gormley scored his 37th goal of the season early in the game to break the club record set by his team-mate Liam Boyce last season.

Winger Martin Donnelly bagged two in the second half with Marc Smyth and Stevie Garrett getting the other goals.

The Reds have two away matches left, against Portadown and Crusaders, while Linfield are at home to Glentoran on Tuesday and away to cup finalists Glenavon on Saturday, 26 April.

With a goal difference advantage over Linfield of 12, the Reds could effectively seal the crown with victory at Shamrock Park on Tuesday.

There was never any doubt they would see off a much-changed Glenavon side with seemingly more than one eye on the 3 May Irish Cup final.

Gormley struck the sixth-minute opener after a superb through ball by strike partner Boyce.

That is how it stayed until Donnelly scored direct from a free-kick in the 53rd minute, his left-foot strike going across the face of goal to beat young Glenavon goalkeeper Sean McIlhone.

Defender Smyth made it three on 65 minutes, smashing in after a corner had not been dealt with.

Garrett glanced in a header for 4-0 and Donnelly got his second in stoppage-time after Eamon Seydak had cut the ball back.