Dungannon Swifts are to take on Derry City in a high stakes contest.
It won’t be a competitive football match, but it certainly isn’t going to be a friendly engagement —because the action is set to take place in the High Court!
The clubs are at odds over money the Swifts claim they are owed from the transfer of their former star Niall McGinn (pictured) from Derry to Glasgow Celtic.
The chairman of the Dungannon club has lambasted City for refusing to pay them what they claim is their agreed share of the cash from the deal which brought Donaghmore man McGinn from the Brandywell to Celtic Park.
Jarlath Faloon says that solicitors representing Derry City have responded to a High Court writ by denying that they owe any more to his club than that which has already been paid — the £20,000 Swifts received as the initial transfer fee to prise him away from Stangmore Park and £5,000 for his first international appearance.
“The latter payment actually came not as cash but in exchange for our signing of Aaron Callaghan, while it took them ten months to pay us the £20,000 in ‘dribs and drabs’” explained Faloon, himself a solicitor practising in Dungannon. “We have the details of the deal on Derry City headed notepaper and signed by general manager Noel Martin, which clearly show that they owe us 20% of any further transfer from Derry City, plus a further £5,000 on McGinn making his fifth international appearance.
“It’s there in black and white, yet they are brazenly claiming that they don’t owe us the money, that being their response, via their solicitors, to our writ.
“Indeed, Derry City have even refused point blank to even tell us how much they received for the player. We believe the fee to be between £200,000 and £250,000 which means we believe we are entitled to between £40,000 and £50,000 plus and another £5,000 should he get five Northern Ireland caps.”
Derry City chairman Pat McDaid was unavailable for comment.