The Red Hughs GAA club has hit back after it was claimed that a referee was ‘locked’ in a dressing room ‘for his own safety’ after an underage final last week.
The story hit the national headlines and airwaves in recent days.
Red Hughs, in a statement posted on the club’s Facebook page, says it has received the referee’s report and that it ‘makes no mention whatsoever of being ‘locked’ in his dressing room or being in fear of his safety’.
Red Hughs wee beaten by Naomh Brid/Pettigo in last Friday’s Under-14 Division 3 final in Mountcharles – a game refereed by an official from the St Naul’s club.
In the statement, Red Hughs expressed ‘sincere disappointment’ at the reports which surfaced this week.
“Allegations of the utmost gravity were made against some of our members,” the club says.
“In the interest of fairness and accuracy, we should have been given the opportunity to respond to the allegations.
“The club has had a longstanding, and positive, relationship with the referee in question, a fact he refers to at the end of his report. Indeed, the same referee officiated at a Minor match in Donegal town the morning after the U14 final in Mountcharles.
“…These allegations made in the report call into question the reputation of the club, the players, managers and supporters of the club, the damage of which is irreparable. Finally Red Hugh’s will fully cooperate in an investigation, if any, by the Donegal County Board.”
Red Hughs’ strongly-worded rebuttal adds that the club ‘wholly and firmly condemn any violence and abuse, be this verbal or physical, against officials, managers, fellow players, supporters and so take very seriously the allegations made.’