Further to our statement to our supporters yesterday:
Cliftonville Football Club would like to address the wider community about recent events reported in the media.
Jay Donnelly last week pleaded guilty to a charge of distributing an indecent image and will be sentenced in January.
The Club does not condone such behaviour, has made that clear to Jay Donnelly and the player himself accepts he must atone.
Cliftonville Football Club is acutely aware that a young woman has suffered because of Jay Donnelly’s actions. The Club feels it has a duty of care to everyone associated at this moment in time.
It was with this in mind that Cliftonville FC released a statement to our supporters yesterday, appealing to our fans and the media to bear with us as we seek a considered resolution.
Please be assured that Cliftonville FC will take strong action to protect the good name of the Club and our supporters, but we are also mindful not to take knee-jerk action that could impact negatively on any injured parties.
The Club welcomes dialogue with sincere and interested bodies who can offer guidance in handling a very sensitive matter in a firm but composed fashion.
The Club also hopes to engage with relevant bodies to offer education programmes to all players at our Club, at all levels.
We acknowledge there are people both within and without our Club calling for immediate action, an understandable reaction to an emotive issue.
Cliftonville Football Club will not shirk its responsibilities to both our members and the wider community, but we again appeal for this matter to be handled in a measured fashion.
The courts will deliberate before delivering justice, as will Cliftonville Football Club.