A statement from Portadown FC said this afternoon: “After further discussions this deal has not been concluded. We wish Joe all the best for his future career.”
Joe Gorman, aged 27, was thought to have been signed by Portadown FC last week, with the Shamrock Park club announcing the news on Saturday via social media.
Posting a photo of the Dubliner, Portadown FC said: “Portadown Football Club is delighted to announce the signing of 27 year old Irish defender Joe Gorman, who was most recently with Galway United.”
However many comments on Facebook and Twitter referred to a Tweet eight years (2014) ago when Joe Gorman was a youth team footballer at the Scottish Premiership club Inverness.
He tweeted: “Ross Kemp in Belfast talking about the Troubles. Wouldn’t you just love to open up on all them Orangemen.”
He was suspended by Inverness after that tweet appeared about the TV actor and documentary maker Ross Kemp who was in Belfast at an Orange Parade which had been blocked by police on the Woodvale Road.
Gorman also played at Airdrie and Inverness Caledonian Thistle as well as Bray Wanderers and Drogheda United in the League of Ireland.
The announcment to sign Mr Gorman produced a backlash with one person saying: “Portadown have now sunk to a new low, I for one will not be going to support any team this individual is playing in.”
Another said: “Joe Gorman if you’re a real man we’ll stand up and apologise to the orange men, plus to the people of Portadown who will be paying you wages which I’m sure isn’t cheap.”
Supporting Mr Gorman, another person stated: “I’m sure there is not one man/woman on here who have commented that have never been in a position of regret and have needed someone to hold out a hand and offer them a 2nd chance
“If you can introduce me to someone who has never made a mistake then I’ll happily shake their hand. Disgraceful tweet yes but how long ago was it? Maybe the lad has made better choices since the tweet and tried to better himself as a human being or maybe he hasn’t and needs to stand up and apologise but even if he did would it be good enough for people? Surely we all deserve a 2nd shot at being a better person.
“Northern Ireland is a bitter bitter place and his tweet didn’t help his cause but we choose to move on or move back.”