A non league club have chosen to apologise for playing a jailed footballer – who severely beat up his girlfriend – in a friendly this week.
The male ended up being jailed after he beat up a woman with iron bar, forced her to eat paint, smashed mirrors over her head, rubbed glass into her and threatened her to run down a street naked.
That man was former Guiseley striker Reece Thompson pleaded guilty and was sent to 40 months locked up and also received a 10-year restraining order.
He was released from prison early, before the footballer then tweeted on January the 4th that he would be looking for a new club.
Need to dig the boots back out. anyone need a few goals banging in? Haha
— Reece Thompson (@Reece22Thompson) January 4, 2020
Fast forward to this week, Northern Counties East League Division One side Selby Town chose to play him in a pre-season friendly which ended 5-3 to Tadcaster Albion, he was named as ‘trialist’ on social media, however eagle-eyed fans spotted him in the photos and quickly slammed him and the club.
Selby ended up issuing a statement, which read: “Yesterday evening we took part in a pre-season friendly at which a decision was made to play a new trialist – Reece Thompson.
“We wish to make clear that when including this person in our squad we were not condoning his actions or making light of his prior conviction, we accept it was a mistake to give the player a trial and wholeheartedly apologise for any upset it has caused.
“As a community football club we pride ourselves on being family friendly and as a club we take this very seriously.
— Jason Higgins (@jahiggins208) August 26, 2020
“In this case a serious error of judgement was made and once again, we can only apologise for our mistake and make clear that the player in question will not be joining our squad now or in the future.”
The ex-Lincoln City, Retford United, Frickley Athletic, York City, North Ferriby United and Boston United player pleaded guilty ‘to damaging property, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and inflicting.
The woman’s jaw was broken and had severe bruising on her body during a three-day attack by Thompson.
Since that assault back in September, he has not played for Guiseley and the club yesterday terminated his contract.
The very short and simple statement read: “The club is aware of the article today published in the Lincolnshire Echo regarding Reece Thompson.
“Having now been made aware of the full details of the case, we can confirm that the players contract has been terminated with immediate effect.”
She told Lincolnshire Live: “Reece repeatedly hit me.
“He hit me with an iron bar, broke my jaw and smashed a mirror over my head.
“I was made to lick paint up off the floor and then he smashed another mirror over my head.
“It was when he picked up the second mirror that I thought I was going to die, I screamed for him to stop or he would kill me.
“He told me to get my arms down and take the beating like a real person.”
Fans reacted before and after the non league club chose to apologise for playing a footballer who beat up girlfriend with an iron bar and was sent to jail…
Correct decision but an astonishing lack of judgment to even think about playing him.
— GDA (@GDA77741581) August 27, 2020
How on earth did you not realise this beforehand?
— TOTP (@totpogo) August 27, 2020
It’s only a mistake because of the backlash you have got, who made that decision should be sacked
— Anthony Evans (@Anthony40907284) August 27, 2020
Correct decision. That man has forfeited any right to a career in football by his actions. Though a two-second google search could’ve avoided this.
— David Kendra (@davidkendra) August 27, 2020
Well done Selby Town.
— Y Front (@YfrontFanzine) August 27, 2020
Have you actually read what he did ?
— Craig Nicoll (@NicoYork) August 27, 2020
Won’t be coming back to watch if he ever signs, what are you doing @SelbyTown_FC
— Michael Dunham (@mikedunham65) August 27, 2020
“The good news is the trialist scored two goals.
The bad news is we’ve just found out who he is and have withdrawn our membership from the FA”
— Tom Outing (@tommyouting) August 26, 2020
Certainly wants taking out
— Garry Gibb (@GarryGibb) August 26, 2020
What TF were you thinking taking Thompson on trial? Shame on you all at the club.
— Charlotte (@lotslottie16) August 26, 2020
Name him if you’ve put him in a shirt. Disgusting he should be nowhere near the game in any capacity.
— Noddy (@Noddy_Holder) August 26, 2020
Be a shame if any of your sponsors pulled the plug when they find out who “Trialist” is ?https://t.co/5GfYqnBumO
— Craig Nicoll (@NicoYork) August 26, 2020
You should be absolutely ashamed of yourselves for giving that lowlife the time of day
— Lucy Kendrew (@lucyalexandra) August 26, 2020
I would say @SelbyTown_FC is a decent club BUT they have made a poor decision on this occasion! He will score goals no doubt but at what cost to the club’s reputation?
— Rob Fitzgerald (@rmf80) August 26, 2020