A GRIEVING dad whose son was killed in Greece says he is ‘angry and upset’ – after Sheffield Wednesday snubbed his family’s campaign for justice.
David Cryer’s son Matthew, a lifelong Wednesdayite, died aged 17 at the foot of a steep flight of stairs at a Zante nightclub in July 2008. He was on his first holiday abroad without his parents.
Back in England, a coroner ruled he had been unlawfully killed after hearing from witnesses that he had been beaten up by bouncers and thrown down the steps at Cocktails and Dreams club in Laganas.
A post mortem examination showed he had bruises all over his body where he had been pummelled and kicked.
Supported by The Star, his family launched a Justice for Matt Campaign aiming to bring the prosecution of those responsible for his death.
Four years on, the campaign has secured the backing of thousands, including MPs, sports stars and even Prime Minister David Cameron. But when his family asked Sheffield Wednesday Football Club for permission to hang a Justice for Matt banner at Hillsborough, it declined.
The decision has shocked Matt’s family and friends.
Dad David, from Frecheville, said: “Matthew was a massive Wednesdayite. His coffin was draped in a Wednesday shirt, all his flowers were blue and white and there are three bricks inscribed with his name in the Wall of Fame at Hillsborough.
“We believed hanging a banner at the televised Preston match would help publicise our campaign to a wider audience, and speed our fight for justice.
“We asked the club for permission to hang up the banner, which reads Justice for Matt and has The Star logo.
“It is in no way offensive or insulting and wherever we have shown it there has never been a complaint. But we were told by Wednesday we would not be allowed.”
Sheffield Wednesday director of communications, Trevor Braithwait, told The Star the club was unavailable for comment.
But David said fans often take flags and banners to games without a problem – and, as far as he knows, they never ask for permission.
He added: “I was then told my banner could pose a health and safety risk and if we did hang it out it would be confiscated. But if that really is the case, aren’t all the other banners causing a similar risk?
“When we took the banner to Brendan Ingle’s gym in Wincobank we were welcomed with open arms. Kid Galahad, who is being tipped to become a world champion, was more than happy to support our cause.
“As a lifelong Wednesdayite myself, this has left me upset and angry.”