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17th Oct 2021

Outrageous scenes as Glentoran ‘keeper attacks his own team-mate in moment of madness

Callum Boyle

Football or WWE?

Red cards aren’t uncommon in football, but seeing a player sent off for scrapping with their own teammate is something of a rarity.

That’s exactly what happened in Northern Ireland on Saturday night as Glentoran goalkeeper Aaron McCarey was shown a straight red for attacking teammate Bobby Burns during their side’s draw with Coleraine.

McCarey lost his cool with Burns after conceding an equaliser late on into the game, responding to the goal by sprinting over to his teammate and lashing out, sending him to the turf. With Burns clutching his face, McCarey then grabs hold of him by his shirt, presumably in an attempt to pick him up.

Fell0w Glentoran players Rhys Marshall and Patrick McClean were on hand to split up the pair and stop it from escalating – and becoming even more embarrassing.

Their teammates intervention came too late, however, with the referee sending McCarey off.

The former Wolverhampton Wanderers goalkeeper was greeted by jeers all around the stadium as he walked off the pitch and is likely to serve a lengthy ban as a result.

Former Glentoran player Paul Leeman described it as “moment of madness” whilst manager Mick McDermott tried to downplay the situation, insisting the goal conceded was what he was more worried about after the two players resolved their issue.

Speaking to the BBC, he said: “I am more concerned about how we conceded the goal before the incident. Aaron has come into the dressing room and said he shouldn’t have done it, he has held his hand up and Bobby Burns the same.

“They’re both gutted with what happened, so look, we’ll deal with it. I spoke to Bobby and he said he didn’t strike him in the face. There was no contact with the face.

“Until I see the footage I can’t give you my opinion of it. Bobby confirmed in the dressing room, I actually brought him into my office, he said there was no contact with his face but when he fell back he hit his head on the grass and that was the reaction.”

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