Football

Disgust In Scottish Football Over 'Abhorrent Behaviour' Of Fans Towards Ex-Dundalk Footballer

Disgust In Scottish Football Over 'Abhorrent Behaviour' Of Fans Towards Ex-Dundalk Footballer

Falkirk apologised on Tuesday night after their fans threw fake eyeballs onto the pitch during a Scottish Championship defeat to Dunfermline.

The actions of fans were intended as abuse directed at Dunfermline and former Dundalk midfielder Dean Shiels. A former Northern Ireland international, Shiels was a youth player at Arsenal and has also played for Hibs, Kilmarnock and Rangers.

Following a domestic incident, Shiels - who is the son of Derry City manager Kenny Shiels - lost sight in one eye at the age of eight. In 2006, acting under advice from doctors, the 32-year-old had the eye removed as it was causing him headaches.

In a statement, Falkirk said that they will take action against any fan who can be identified.

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Falkirk FC apologises unreservedly to Dean Shiels and Dunfermline Athletic FC for the abhorrent behaviour of a small number of individuals at this afternoon’s Ladbrokes Championship match.

The club wholeheartedly condemns the abuse witnessed towards Dean Shiels in the strongest terms and will be working closely with Dunfermline Athletic FC to identify those responsible.

Abuse towards anyone with a disability is simply unacceptable and the fact this took place within a sporting context with rivalries at play is no excuse. This needs to stop now.

It is not the first incident involving Shiels and Falkirk this season. Falkirk players Joe McKee and Kevin O'Hara were given lengthy suspensions earlier this season after both were found guilty of "excessive misconduct" for the abuse of Shiels regarding his disability. McKee was handed a four-match ban and O'Hara an eight-match ban.

Quiz: Can You Name The Top Scorer From Every Premier League Season?

PJ Browne
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