UEFA has no issue with Mourneview Park war memorial

The memorial at Mourneview Park.
The memorial at Mourneview Park.

The body governing European football has clarified that a war memorial sited at Glenavon’s Mourneview Park ground does not require to be covered over during an international tournament.

There were claims on Thursday that the First World War tribute inside the Lurgan stadium would have to be hidden from view to comply with UEFA rules on potentially controversial symbols.

Mourneview has been selected as one of a number of local venues hosting matches during the UEFA Women’s Under-19 Championship taking place between August 8 to August 20.

In a statement issued on Thursday night, the tournament’s local organising committee said: “Following concerns raised by representatives of the local community, the organisers of the Women’s Under-19 Championship decided that the war memorial at Mourneview Park would not be covered during the tournament.

“Other measures, including low screens, will be used instead to ensure that the ground complies with international tournament regulations.”

Yesterday, a UEFA spokesman said: “The local organising committee of the UEFA Women’s Under-19 Championship requested that the war memorial at Mourneview Park be screened from the field of play based on UEFA guidelines. However, UEFA has advised that there is no obligation for the memorial in question to be covered up.”

There will be 12 group games in total played in four venues, including Windsor Park, Ballymena Showgrounds and Shamrock Park in Portadown. The National Football Stadium at Windsor Park will then host the semi-finals and final.

Northern Ireland are set to take on Spain, Germany and Scotland in the group stages, while the other group brings holders France, England, Italy and the Netherlands together.