Belfast Telegraph

Donegal Celtics suspension hits Steel Cup draw

By Keith Bailie

The ramifications of the Sean Cleary debacle continue to haunt Donegal Celtic.

The West Belfast club have been refused entry into the Steel & Sons Cup following their failure to pay an outstanding fine to the Irish FA.

Donegal Celtic were suspended from football on Monday by the IFA for non-payment of a fine, related to the Sean Cleary case.

The County Antrim FA, who organise the prestigious intermediate tournament, were unable to enter Celtic into Wednesday night's draw due to the suspension, meaning they will be unable to participate this years competition.

In May, Donegal Celtic beat Lisburn Distillery 2-1, only to be later stripped of the points, as they fielded the suspended Sean Cleary. Although DC ultimately had to accept the points deduction, the delay in paying the customary fine has cost them a place in the Steel & Sons Cup.

Although DC have paid the fine to the governing body – and their suspension has been lifted – they can not be reinstated into the Steel & Sons Cup. The ban comes ten years after DC won the trophy, beating Dee Heron's Killyleagh 3-0 in the Christmas morning final at Seaview.

First Round draw: H&Welders v Rathcoole, Larne v Shorts, Ards Rangers v Dunmurry Rec, Queen's v Ballymena United Reserves, Groomsport v Dromara Village, Ballywalter v Nortel, Cairniny v Newington Rangers, Ballyclare Comrades v Lower Maze, Ballymacash Rangers v Iveagh United, Kilroot Rec v Downshire, Shankill United v Crewe United, Newcastle v Raceview, Rathfern Rangers v Chimney Corner, Brantwood v Ballynure, Brantwood v Ballynure, East Belfast v Ards Seconds, Ardglass v Dundela, Immaculata v Dunloy, Donard Hospital v St Pats YM, 18th Newtownabbey OB v Crumlin Star, Killyleagh v Bangor Rangers, Lisburn Rangers v Orangefield

Games will be played on Saturday, August 17. All others received byes into the Second Round.

Belfast Telegraph


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