Middlesbrough FC manager in apology to Doncaster library over photocopying row

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The manager of Middlesbrough Football Club has apologised to a Doncaster library volunteer - in a row over photocopying.

Spanish boss Aitor Karanka penned a grovelling apology to Warmsworth Library worker Mike Collinson - after he accused club staff of not paying for copying matchday team tactic sheets.

The bizarre row unfolded ahead of last Saturday’s Championship match between Middlesbrough and Doncaster Rovers at the Keepmoat Stadium which ended 0-0.

Club officials had dropped into the library to photocopy matchday plans - and were told they would have to pay a fiver for the copies.

Yet Mr Collinson had to go to the visiting team’s hotel to collar Mr Karanka during the head coach’s pre-match meeting after two Boro staff failed to pay their 50p a copy.

Mr Collinson, 67, said: “They were staying at the Holiday Inn about 200 yards down the road.

“These two gentlemen came in with a memory stick wanting to print a couple of documents off so I told them it was 50p a copy.

“Because it was only a couple of documents I said I would let them off with the charge but it turned out they were printing out game plans - I told them that they would have to pay because they had printed out so many.

The roblems began when the two men told Mr Collinson that they only had a credit card to pay with.

The volunteer told the pair that the library did not have the facility to take card payments.

“We came to an arrangement for them to pay us £5 before the library closed at noon - but nobody turned up,” said Mr Collinson.

“Before I went home I walked along to the Holiday Inn and found the manager but I don’t think he got the gist of what I was saying.

“The two lads who had been in earlier started to tell this tale of how they were going to bring the bus round on the way to the match.

“I have spent quite a lot of time in the north-east and that’s not what I would expect from anyone from there.

“I just stormed out - I didn’t give them a chance to pay even if they wanted to.”

Mr Collinson then complained to the club and received an email - complete with a letter from Karanka.

The Boro head coach set out his “sincerest apologies” for his staff’s “unacceptable” actions - and personally invited Mr Collinson to any of Middlesbrough’s remaining home fixtures this season as his personal guest.

Karanka added that he hoped that this would “in some small way repay you for your kindness on Saturday”.

But Mr Collinson was surprised to find no mention of the £5 owed to his library.

“I accept his apology,” he said. “And I was going to tell them thanks for the generous offer - but a cheque for £5 would suffice.”

Now, a Boro spokesman has said: “This was an unfortunate error by some of our backroom staff, for which we sincerely apologise.

“A member of staff will go to the library tomorrow to pay the £5.”

The incident comes after another row between Middlesbrough and Rovers after a Boro supporter posted photos online boasting of allegedy stealing a seat from the Keepmoat Stadium.

A fan, posting under the name Lewis Crowe, shared pictures online boasting of taking the seat during Saturday’s game.

The photos, circulated on Facebook and Twitter, show the supporter making a rude gesture to the camera and clutching the red seat emblazoned with the lettering UTB in white adhesive tape. UTB stands for a Middlesbrough slogan, Up The Boro.

Both clubs and South Yorkshire Police confirmed they were investigating the incident and considering action against the fan

Angry Doncaster Rovers fans blasted the supporter on Facebook, calling for him to be prosecuted and banned from attending football matches.