Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 September 2014

Lightbody defends football support

Singer Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol has defended his support of the Republic of Ireland during the Euros

Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody has defended cheering on the Republic of Ireland during Euro 2012.

The Northern Ireland-born singer, a fully fledged supporter of his home country, has been attacked online for supporting both sides.

"I'm a Northern Ireland supporter for sure," he told the Press Association. "But the Republic of Ireland are in this tournament and I'm getting behind them. It's a tricky subject but they would always be my second team."

Lightbody faced a raft of online abuse after declaring on Twitter support for the Republic, his second team, as he says.

"All my tweets are just about spreading love," he said. "I'm green and white army, no doubt, but I'll also support the Republic when they play."

The singer followed that up by calling on Ireland fans to go to a charity gig at the Centrum Stocznia Gdanska, an old warehouse in the shipyard where German U-boats were built in the Second World War 2.

Lightbody and bandmates guitarist Nathan Connolly, bassist Paul Wilson, drummer Jonny Quinn and keyboardist Tom Simpson met the Ireland team in Sopot before playing a concert to about 2,000 fans, half of them in green jerseys.

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