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Cliftonville appeal Rory Donnelly suspension over WhatsApp message

Cliftonville have appealed the three-month suspension handed to striker Rory Donnelly by the Irish FA over a social media post.

The 26-year-old's ban started on July 30, with half of the sanction suspended until the end of the 2018-19 season, but ruling Donnelly out of the first six weeks of the new season which begins on Saturday.

The charge related to a breach of regulations regarding "behaviour that damages or could damage the integrity of matches and competitions".

Donnelly's punishment followed a message the player posted on WhatsApp about Cliftonville's team selection before their final match of the Danske Bank Premiership season against Linfield on April 28.

The Reds have lodged their appeal and the Irish FA's Appeals Board will now look at the case.

Solitude boss Barry Gray has, meanwhile, promoted Caoimhin McConnell from the Olympic team and sealed the return of Daniel White from Newington.

Rotherham United graduate Thomas Maguire has also joined the north Belfast club for the new season.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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