Angry scenes marred the Under 17 Shield Final on New Year’s Day, which saw Lisburn Distillery have four players sent off.
Distillery, who had been favourites to win the Shield trophy, and Knockbreda Youth met at Rushmore, but tempers soon flared, with management and coaches from both sides invading the pitch several times, as they disagreed with refereeing decisions.
In what was described by one onlooker as a ‘non-aggressive match’, it seems red cards produced by the referee led to protests from both sides and caused tempers to boil over.
In total five players were dismissed, with the Knockbreda manager also being given his marching orders, as Distillery eventually lost the final 4-1 to Knockbreda Youth.
Lisburn Distillery have declined to comment at this stage as they await the League Committee meeting, with expectations being that the club will be fined.
The young Whites’ side took the lead early on through Kyle McCleery, but soon found themselves down to ten men, whilst Knockbreda equalised before half time.
A number of incidents occurred during the game, which saw coaches and officials from both sides run onto the pitch to protest at decisions by the referee.
Before the end Distillery had three more players dismissed and Knockbreda one plus their manager, which meant there were only 17 players on the pitch at the finish.
However, in spite of a number of these heated scenes on the pitch, things had calmed down at the end and everyone seemed to be on good terms again, with both teams applauding each other and coaches shaking hands.