Wednesday 25 April 2018

Footballer's family 'lifted' by jersey tribute on graffiti bridge

A passerby looks at football jerseys on the bridge and, inset, the defaced plaque on Monday.
A passerby looks at football jerseys on the bridge and, inset, the defaced plaque on Monday.
Liam Whelan Bridge memorial plaque, defaced with graffiti, in Cabra, Dublin. Photo: Caroline Quinn
The Liam Whelan Bridge adorned with jerseys today
The graffiti that defaced the Liam Whelan bridge in Dublin was quickly replaced with football jerseys

Brian Byrne

The family of Ireland and Manchester United football star Liam Whelan have been given a "great lift" by support they received since a bridge named after him was defaced.

The Liam Whelan bridge in Phibsboro, Dublin – named to honour the Busby Babe who died in the Munich air disaster in 1958 – was defaced with offensive graffiti this week.

However, Mr Whelan's sister Rita told how the family have been overwhelmed by support with residents in north Dublin rallying together to cover the bridge with dozens of jerseys.

Ms Whelan said it had been a "great lift" for the whole family.

She said: "The respect of so many people out there outdoes the bad."

Ms Whelan said there were more than 40 jerseys left on the bridge by yesterday morning. She added that the jerseys weren't just those worn by Manchester United, but a huge variety of Premier League clubs including Sunderland, Manchester City, Chelsea and even local GAA club St Finbarr's.

"Locals are pulling up now and taking photographs. It's just unbelievable," she said.

The graffiti was earlier covered up by the local Bohemian Football Club and then removed by Dublin City Council.

Red spray paint was used to write the words 'Munich b******' and 'LFC' in huge letters across the bridge on Sunday night following Liverpool's 3-2 win over Manchester City.

Irish Independent

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