Cliftonville's Ryan Catney has surgery on broken leg

Ryan Catney was injured during the first half of Cliftonville's match away to Crusaders
Ryan Catney was injured during the first half of Cliftonville's match away to Crusaders

Cliftonville midfielder Ryan Catney has had surgery after sustaining a broken leg during the Irish Premiership match against Crusaders.

The 29-year-old underwent an operation on Sunday morning and now faces a lengthy rehabilitation programme.

Catney was injured in a challenge with Crusaders defender Howard Beverland and was shown a red card as he was being carried off the pitch on a stretcher.

"This will be a tough time for Ryan," said Cliftonville boss Gerard Lyttle.

"But he should know he has the support of everyone at the club - we all wish him a full recovery.

"Ryan has been a major part of the success enjoyed by this club in recent years and, knowing him, he will already be thinking about getting back onto the pitch to help us again."

Catney has made 359 appearances for the north Belfast club since joining from Lisburn Distillery in 2007.

League champions Crusaders won the match 1-0 to maintain their seven-point lead over second-placed Linfield at the top of the Premiership table.

Adam Salley has played for Northern Ireland at Under-17 and 19 level
Adam Salley has played for Northern Ireland at Under-17 and 19 level

Meanwhile, Carrick Rangers striker Adam Salley is to join Portadown next season.

Salley, who turns 20 in February, had signed a pre-contract agreement with Portadown who are nine points adrift at the bottom of the Premiership table and favourites to be relegated.

The player, currently on loan at Carrick from Linfield, will join the Ports on a two-year professional contract in June.

The Shamrock Park club are banned from signing players on professional terms before then by the Irish FA after being found guilty of paying players who were registered as amateurs.