Sunday 25 February 2018

Football supporters face court after five arrests at match

Paul Melia

Paul Melia

FIVE soccer supporters from Northern Ireland will appear in court this morning after being arrested over the weekend at a Setanta Cup match.

The five men, all in their 30s and 40s, are Glentoran supporters and were arrested on public order offences before and during the match against Bohemians in Dublin's Dalymount Park on Saturday.

Three of the men were arrested after fighting briefly broke out shortly after kick-off.

It is understood that gardai intervened when a Glentoran supporter attempted to erect an Ulster flag at the stadium.

The other two men were arrested before the game.

The garda press office said that all were charged with public order offences and released on bail. They will appear in court this morning.

Yesterday Glentoran chairman Aubrey Ralph accused gardai of over-reacting to the trouble.

"Officials from our club have told me some guards were heavy-handed with our fans," he told BBC Northern Ireland.

"We took a large body of supporters down there, about 700, and a lot complained very bitterly about how they were treated."

He added: I thought they appeared to bring in a public order unit and Alsatian dogs very quickly, which never helps a situation.

"We certainly want questions asked if we need so much policing, or public order policing," Mr Ralph said. The match was a 1-1 draw, which meant Glentoran did not qualify for the semi-finals of the All-Ireland competition.

Irish Independent

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