Mackem Poppy Boy No 'War Monger'!

Last updated : 08 November 2014 By Footy Mad - Editor

He gave a letter to the club’s chairman, Dave Whelan, which has been published on the Wigan website.

McClean came on as sub after 56 minutes against Bolton in a game the Trotters won.

McClean's tattoo

Whelan accepted the Republic of Ireland midfielder’s stance and both stated their wish for the letter to be published in full.

“For people from the North of Ireland such as myself, and specifically those in Derry, scene of the 1972 Bloody Sunday massacre, the poppy has come to mean something very different.

“Please understand, Mr Whelan, that when you come from Creggan like myself or the Bogside, Brandywell or the majority of places in Derry, every person still lives in the shadow of one of the darkest days in Ireland’s history – even if like me you were born nearly 20 years after the event. It is just a part of who we are, ingrained into us from birth.

“Mr Whelan, for me to wear a poppy would be as much a gesture of disrespect for the innocent people who lost their lives in the Troubles – and Bloody Sunday especially - as I have in the past been accused of disrespecting the victims of WWI and WWII. It would be seen as an act of disrespect to those people; to my people.

“I am not a war monger, or anti-British, or a terrorist or any of the accusations levelled at me in the past. I am a peaceful guy. I believe everyone should live side by side, whatever their religious or political beliefs which I respect and ask for people to respect mine in return. Since last year I am a father and I want my daughter to grow up in a peaceful world, like any parent.

“I am very proud of where I come from and I just cannot do something that I believe is wrong. In life, if you’re a man, you should stand up for what you believe in.

“I know you may not agree with my feelings but I hope very much that you understand my reasons. As the owner of the club I am proud to play for, I believe I owe both you and the club’s supporters this explanation.”

All very well ... but he has often shown his support for the IRA, as he did at Sunderland.

“I am not a war monger, or anti-British, or a terrorist or any of the accusations levelled at me in the past" ... but that has OFTEN been the case! He HAS shown support for the IRA.

There is no doubting that!

If he is SO passionate about Londonderry (as it is officially called), why doesn't he play for them?

I'm sure they would love him there.