Belfast Telegraph

Home Office overturns decision to reject Glentoran manager's wife visa application

Glentoran football manager Mick McDermott has hit out immigration authorities after his wife of 23 years was refused a visa to live in Northern Ireland.
Glentoran football manager Mick McDermott has hit out immigration authorities after his wife of 23 years was refused a visa to live in Northern Ireland.
Mark Bain

By Mark Bain

The Home Office has reversed a decision over a visa application for the wife of Glentoran football manager Mick McDermott to live in Northern Ireland.

Karla McDermott has spent the past eight weeks 4,000 miles away in Dubai awaiting a Home Office decision as the couple, who have four children, try to set up home in Newtownabbey.

She had hoped to be back in Northern Ireland this week, but news came through on Thursday that her application to live here with her family had been refused.

After being contacted by the Belfast Telegraph, the Home Office said it was “reconsidering” the decision to deny Mrs McDermott a visa.

Later on Friday evening, the Home Office confirmed it had overturned the decision and issued a new visa.

Having worked in football all around the world during his coaching career, Mick was appointed as head coach at Glentoran FC in March this year.

He and his family had been looking forward to settling on the outskirts of his home city of Belfast.

Mick admitted he would have thought twice about taking on the managerial role at Belfast football club Glentoran had he known it would put almost 4,000 miles between his wife and their children for such a long time.

The situation meant that Karla (43) was separated from the couple’s four children, leaving Mick (45) at home in Newtownabbey to juggle family life with his demanding day job.

Mick, raised in Glencairn, and Karla, who was born in California and holds a US passport, have travelled extensively throughout their marriage.

The couple met in the USA 25 years ago while they were both on sports scholarships at Rhode Island University and were married when Mick was 21 and Karla 19.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph