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10th Nov 2018

James McClean releases apologetic statement ahead of Stoke City’s trip to Nottingham Forest

McClean has been "dealt with" under the terms of Stoke's disciplinary procedure

Darragh Murphy

Stoke City are eager to put the furore surrounding James McClean behind them

The Championship club claims that James McClean has been dealt with after an investigation was conducted into their winger’s Instagram post relating to the abuse he faced from supporters at the end of Stoke’s 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough last weekend.

McClean, who took to the pitch without a poppy on his jersey as he has done for several years, was subjected to jeers at the full-time whistle before some fans threw objects in the 29-year-old’s direction as he attempted to make his way down the tunnel at the bet365 Stadium.

The Republic of Ireland international branded the offending fans”uneducated cavemen in the left corner of the Boothen End who sing their anti-Irish song every game” in an Instagram statement which resulted in a Stoke investigation.

On Friday, the club stated: “Stoke City’s investigation into James McClean’s social media post following last Saturday’s game against Middlesbrough has concluded and the player has been dealt with under the terms of the club’s disciplinary procedure.”

McClean later apologised to any Potters fans offended ahead of this weekend’s trip to Nottingham Forest.

“At last Saturday’s game a section of our supporters threatened and abused me because of my religious beliefs and upbringing,” McClean said in a statement on Stoke City’s website.

“I am certain that no fair-minded person would regard that as acceptable but I recognise that as a professional footballer, and therefore a role model, I’m expected to tolerate it.

“Whilst, I do not believe it is appropriate for me to apologise to those fans who abused me, I do want to whole-heartedly apologise to the vast majority of Stoke City fans who although they may have different views to myself are decent and respectful.

“I sincerely apologise for any offence that I caused them with my comments and posting on Instagram.”