St Patrick’s Athletic’s Gary Dempsey has issued a statement admitting he was the player that has been suspended after betting against his team.

Pat’s stated earlier in the weekend that the club has initiated a review and that one player had been suspended.

Dempsey has now admitted placing a €20 bet on Galway United to beat his side, doubled with English club Manchester City to also win.

The Tribesmen did defeat Pat’s 1-0 at Richmond Park, though Dempsey lost the bet as the match in England ended in defeat for City.

The former Dunfermline Athletic player confirmed: ‘I placed a €20 bet on my club to lose in a double on an occasion which I was not playing and in which I had no influence on the game.

‘I have never before or since placed a bet on my team to lose a game. The bet was in fact unsuccessful as the other team involved were beaten.'

He added: 'I'm not aware and have never been made aware of any regulations that prohibit me from placing a bet on a match that I was not involved in.

‘As far as I'm concerned this incident has been blown out of proportion and I am of course prepared to meet with club officials to sort this matter out.

‘I apologise if my actions have caused distress to my team-mates or my club.’

Players' union General Secretary Stephen McGuinness has stated that suggestions that players had been involved in betting large sums of money on matches in which they had been participating had been blown out of all proportion.

Commenting on Gary Dempsey's statement, McGuinness said: ‘Gary Dempsey is a model professional who has made a minor error of judgment. The PFAI cannot condone betting in matches in which a player is himself involved, but it is important to distinguish between that and the current situation in which Gary was sitting in the stand and was no more in position to influence the result than any other spectator.

‘While placing a bet in Gary's situation was inadvisable it was not contrary to any FAI regulation and in those circumstances, he should not be subject to any disciplinary sanction. This whole incident is a storm in a teacup.’

McGuinness went on to say that he would be working with the club to attempt to reach a satisfactory conclusion.

‘I respect that St Patrick's Athletic have to investigate this matter but it's clear that Gary's momentary lapse of judgement does not merit any punishment and I will speaking with Richard Sadlier immediately on my return on Monday.’