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Shamrock Rovers manager Stephen Bradley. Bryan Keane/INPHO

Fans who taunted Rovers boss about sick son identified as Cork owner promises lifetime bans

The Corner Flag pub say their staff have confirmed those responsible and are now ‘working closely with the club and Gardai to ensure the appropriate action is taken.’

LAST UPDATE | 27 May 2023

CORK CITY OWNER Dermot Usher has confirmed that lifetime bans will be issued to the fans who directed vile chants towards Shamrock Rovers manager Stephen Bradley about his sick son.

Owners of The Corner Flag, the pub that has an area overlooking Turner’s Cross where the songs originated, say they have identified those responsible and are now working closely with the club an Gardaí to ensure the appropriate action is taken.

And Cork chairman Usher has insisted that will result in permanent expulsion from the club’s home games.

“I was too annoyed to comment last night, these people are not Cork City Fans. This type of behaviour has no place in society,” he wrote on social media.

“This is not a true reflection of what Cork City FC and the people are. Lifetime bans will be handed out to anyone connected with this.”

A statement from The Corner Flag added: “We utterly condemn the vile, disgusting chants directed at Stephen Bradley from a group of individuals who entered our premises after the Cork City and Shamrock Rovers game last night.

“Our staff and security team have identified those involved and we are working closely with the club and Gardai to ensure the appropriate action is taken. On behalf of The Corner Flag we apologise to Stephen Bradley and his family and we will support him and the club and relevant authorities in any way we can.”

A statement from Rovers this morning continued: “Shamrock Rovers F.C. condemns the actions of a number of individuals after last night’s game in Cork where some particularly hurtful verbal abuse was directed toward our head coach Stephen Bradley and his family.

“The club appreciates the support of Cork City F.C. in its condemnation of the actions of a few and their commitment to seek out those involved and deal with it accordingly.”

Bradley last night called for lifetime bans for a number of Cork fans who chanted about his sick son following the Leesiders’ 1-0 victory over eight-man Rovers at Turner’s Cross, and says he intends to file a garda report on the incident.

Cork City have also condemned the fans in question and say they will work with the authorities to identify the individuals before taking appropriate action against them on the club’s behalf.

The chants were aimed at Bradley from just outside the ground, in an area overlooking the pitch, while he stood discussing Rovers’ defeat with with Stephen McPhail and Glen Cronin.

“It’s disgusting,” Bradley said. “I’m going to put in a report to the police. Singing about my son…

“You take stick. As a football person, that comes with it. That’s your job and that’s fine. But speaking about a sick nine-year-old is disgusting and Cork City should be ashamed of them. I want them banned for life.

“That’s disgusting. That has no place in football or society. That’s disgusting behaviour.”

A statement released by Cork City shortly afterwards read: “Cork City FC wish to unreservedly condemn the actions of a handful of individuals who directed disgusting abuse at Shamrock Rovers Manager Stephen Bradley from outside the stadium shortly after tonight’s match.

“The club will work with all relevant authorities to identify those involved and take the appropriate action against those involved.

“On behalf of the club, we wish to apologise to Mr Bradley for the actions of these individuals.”

Rovers boss Bradley also slammed the match officials after a game in which his side were given three red cards.

A first-half straight red for Richie Towell, followed by two sendings off in quick succession for Johnny Kenny and Seán Hoare — both for second yellows — meant that the champions were forced to play the final 25 minutes plus stoppage time with eight men.

Bradley denounced Seán Grant’s refereeing of the game as being “embarrassing”, and added that “the officials are the worst I’ve ever seen.”

“Since the start of the season, I’ve tried to stay quiet on it but that would really worry me tonight, those four officials,” he continued.

“That can’t be the standard of refereeing you have in this League. A good crowd here tonight and he ruins it.

“Two games he’s had with us and he’s sent five players. Drogheda and tonight. Incredible. But not just him, the fourth official and the linesman.

“It feels like there is a manager out every week talking about this and they really need to look at it because the standard is incredible.

“They don’t talk to you. Their arrogance is incredible. Embarrassing. Disgraceful. They need to be looked at.

“It seems every week a manager is talking about it and we can’t all be wrong. This isn’t about Shamrock Rovers, Derry, or Dundalk.”

- Additional reporting by Stephen Barry

Written by Gavan Casey and posted on

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