Republic of Ireland haven’t even qualified yet and still they are congratulated - McCrea

Ian McCrea MLA
Ian McCrea MLA
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Mid Ulster DUP MLA Ian McCrea has hit at what he claims is ‘politicking’ by Sinn Fein on the Mid Ulster Council, over the success of Northern Ireland’s football team.

“I was disgusted to see Sinn Fein take a totally non political motion brought forward by party colleague Cllr Cuthbertson, congratulating our Northern Ireland Football team especially our local boys on successfully qualifying for the European Championships in France next year to include the Republic of Ireland and twisting it for their own political ends,” said Mr McCrea.

“Whilst the DUP motion sought to celebrate our national team’s success, Sinn Fein’s amendment sought to downplay it and equate it with the Republic of Ireland success. Whilst the DUP motion sought to highlight the crucial role of players from Mid Ulster in the NI team, Sinn Fein sought to downplay that in favour of promoting those with no connection or relevance to the area.

“I find it quite bizarre that SF would seek to include the Republic of Ireland into the motion when at this stage, they haven’t even qualified, all they have shown is their utter contempt for ‘Our Wee Country’s’ accomplishment.

“Having known Aaron Hughes, Stuart Dallas and their families for many years , I am personally disgusted yet not surprised at how Sinn Fein have reacted and it is high time they kept their politics out of sport.

He added: “Whilst SF might want to play to their nationalist/republican gallery, the people of Mid Ulster, of all political persuasions, colours and creeds, are saluting our local sporting heroes like Stuart Dallas, Aaron Hughes, Niall McGinn and Roy Carroll to name a few, and Northern Ireland as they prepare for next summer.”