Belfast Telegraph

Assault on teenage player during Glenavon and Ballymena game probed by police

By Sara Neill

A teenage footballer needed stitches to a gash on his face after an assault during a match between Glenavon and Ballymena United reserves.

The 16-year-old Glenavon player was assaulted at his team's Mourneview Park stadium on August 12.

The attack happened in an off-the-ball incident during the match.

Glenavon chairman Adrian Teer said: "It happened on the field of play, but I don't think the referee saw it.

"He was taken to hospital and his eye was stitched up.

"It was a really, really serious looking injury."

The Lurgan club's supremo said the assault left the teenager unable to play for about a fortnight.

But he was back in action for the club last week.

Ballymena chairman John Taggart said: "There was an alleged incident between two players.

"As far as the club is concerned, it doesn't like to see any players hurt in a match context."

He added that any inquiry or disciplinary action would be a matter for the IFA, but there was no indication of that happening.

Police believe those watching the match could provide them with more information.

Constable Colin Payne said: "This incident would have occurred in view of the people who attended the match and we would like to hear from any spectators who witnessed the assault or have information which may assist our investigation."

Neither club has carried out an internal investigation into the unsavoury incident.

Ballymena won the game 3-0, maintaining their place at the top of the table, while Glenavon reserves sit fourth from bottom.

Belfast Telegraph


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