Glentoran FC are to hold a minute’s silence on Tuesday to mark the death of Prince Philip, it follows criticism from a former captain for not holding a more public display sooner.
The Sunday Life reported that former Glens captain Pete Batey reacted angrily at the club’s decision to lower their flags at The Oval to half mast instead of holding a minute’s silence before Saturday’s game against Dungannon Swifts.
A statement released by Glentoran on Sunday said they had chosen to mark the sad passing of the Duke of Edinburgh in “a dignified and respectful manner” by lowering the flag and sending condolences to the Queen.
“However as a club we recognise the depth of feeling across much of our support base and wider community was for a more public mark of respect to be displayed. There has been dangerous and baseless commentary since yesterday’s match suggesting this was a snub or that any part of the club was against such a mark of respect. This is simply untrue.”
A minute’s silence will now be held ahead of the club’s next game against Coleraine FC on Tuesday, which will again be held behind closed doors due to Covid restrictions.
The statement added: “We have also been in discussion with Coleraine FC and there will be a further silence before our match at the Showgrounds on Friday evening, the day immediately prior to the Duke’s funeral.”
On Saturday night, a club spokesperson had also told the Sunday Life that there was “no official directive” issued from either the IFA or NIFL on how club’s should respond to Prince Philip’s death on Friday.
Slamming the club on social media, Mr Batey - who appeared 259 times for the team between 1995 and 2002 - posted a picture of himself serving as skipper of Glentoran with the message: “You are the only club in the UK not to have a minute silence in remembrance of the passing of the Duke of Edinburgh.
“This is me serving my country and me proudly captaining Glentoran FC. You are a f*****g disgrace.”
A large section of the Glentoran fanbase were also quick to agree with his view despite the club maintaining that no snub was intended towards the Royal family.