Darron Gibson drove off drunk and hit cyclists following argument with wife, court told
Published 02/09/2015 | 02:30
Republic of Ireland and Everton footballer Darron Gibson has been sentenced to a 12-month community order and banned from driving for 20 months after he ploughed into three cyclists and drove off.
Gibson (27) was also over the legal drink-drive limit when his vehicle mounted the pavement in Bowdon, Cheshire, in England.
His vehicle was in a collision with the men who had stopped at the roadside to fix a broken bicycle chain.
The ex-Manchester United midfielder then sped off in his black Nissan Skyline GT-R Nismo and away from the injured trio before he pulled into a nearby petrol station on the morning of August 16.
Police were called by a concerned garage attendant after Gibson hit a petrol pump and began filling his vehicle with fuel while wearing no shoes.
Officers noticed an "obvious, strong smell of alcohol" on Gibson's breath when they attended the scene. Trafford Magistrates heard Gibson had been on a birthday night out with his Everton team-mates the night before drinking lager and vodka on top of pain-killers he was taking following a hernia operation.
He later stormed out of the house later that morning after an argument with his wife.
The footballer and his vehicle were then positively identified by one of the cyclists.
Gibson was arrested and taken to a police station, where he gave a positive reading of 57 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath - the legal limit being 35.
Yesterday, the Republic of Ireland international entered guilty pleas at Trafford Magistrates' Court to driving with excess alcohol, driving without due care and attention and failing to stop after an accident had occurred.
Gibson must perform 200 hours of unpaid work as part of his community order sentence.
He was also ordered to pay £4,500 in damages caused to one of the bikes, a carbon composite model, which was written off.
He was told to pay £1,000 compensation to the cyclist who he directly hit and £100 each to the two other men.
Gibson was also told to pay £295 in court costs.
In 2007, Gibson - who was born in Derry - was at the centre of a dispute between the FAI and the Irish Football Association after he opted to play for the Republic of Ireland instead of Northern Ireland.
Gibson represented Ireland at Euro 2012 among his 25 caps, and has scored one international goal - against Wales in the 2011 Nations Cup.