Conor McMenamin: Northern Ireland winger cleared over historic video in which he appeared to be chanting pro-IRA slogan | Soccer News


Conor McMenamin was cleared to play in Northern Ireland’s Nations League game against Greece on Tuesday as he will face no further action over a historic video in which he appeared to be chanting a pro-IRA slogan.

The 27-year-old Glentoran winger was dropped from Ian Baraclough’s squad shortly before Saturday’s 2-1 win over Kosovo after the video emerged.

However, as the footage is believed to be almost ten years old and the former Cliftonville and Linfield player was punished by his club at the time, the Irish FA allowed him to travel to Athens on Sunday while a committee independent disciplinary committee was examining whether he had breached the IFA rules.

McMenamin has now been cleared and joined his teammates in training on Monday night ahead of the decisive match against Greece, in which Northern Ireland must avoid defeat to ensure they do not fall into a relegation play-off.

McMenamin was removed a day after striker Kyle Lafferty was sent home amid an investigation by his club Kilmarnock over video appearing to show him using alleged bigoted language, but it was only recorded last week.

Image:
McMenamin (right) played three times for Northern Ireland

McMenamin’s reinstatement for the game against Greece will give him the opportunity to add to the three caps he won in June after a stellar season with Glentoran last term, rewarded with his first international call-up.

Speaking after Saturday’s 2-1 win over Kosovo, Northern Ireland coach Baraclough said he hoped historic videos would not become a recurring problem for the team.

“It’s a distraction you’d rather not have,” Baraclough said. “For this to happen so close to kick-off, I think we did the right thing by removing Conor from the squad. You have to think about it.

“This is clearly a historic social media video from when I was 16 I think. I don’t know where this is going to go yet.

“You just hope it’s not (something that continues) and things don’t go bad. I’d rather leave it at that and not say too much. I was trying to focus on a football game and it is what we did.

“It was difficult for the boys because if you lose two members of the team you know they are getting closer and they don’t like it happening to anyone. It could have played a major role, but they rallied and got a result.”




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