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Calling someone a ‘Fenian’ or a ‘tarrier’ isn’t acceptable- Ryan Porteous calls out Ibrox mob

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Ryan Porteous has spelt out the depth of abuse that he was subjected to on social media after being sent off at Ibrox.

The match wasn’t televised but from the moment Nick Walsh blew his final whistle Radio Scotland and Radio Clyde turned their full attention on the Hibs defender, ignoring completely a similar challenge from John Lundstrum in the opening minutes of the match.

Pundits were quick to weigh in on Porteous, given their lead by Steven Gerrard who reminded them of a challenge in a previous match and patronisingly offering advice to ‘the kid’.

Porteous has played 100 matches for Hibs and been sent off twice, both in matches against Gerrard’s side with Nick Walsh in charge. The Bearsden PE teacher will referee Celtic v St Johnstone today, his first match since red carding Porteous.

Clubs across Scotland will be making their traditional ‘Show Racism The Red Card’ effort this weekend, it seems that the lead organisation has a very narrow definition for racism when it comes to calling it out in Scotland.

Speaking to The Times about the fall-out from Ibrox, Porteous said:

Opinions as such don’t bother me. But I had a long conversation with the gaffer about the abuse I was taking, and we decided to speak out, because it is unacceptable. This stuff cannot be allowed to go on. I do think old-fashioned ‘stick’ is a part of football and, being a player, you have to take it. But when a 22-year-old guy like me makes a challenge on a football pitch, and then receives death-threats, and gets slandered by many people as a racist because I dared to tackle a black Rangers player, and is then wanted ‘to die of cancer’, I just think all of that is wrong. Maybe some players wouldn’t come out and talk about these things . . . they would shy away from it. But I can’t. It’s totally off the scale and it has to be called out.

You have a generation of kids growing up, who might see this stuff — religious abuse, gender abuse, homophobic abuse — and think it is normal, and think they can get away with it. Kids today they can see adults calling someone a ‘Fenian’ or a ‘tarrier’ and they think this is acceptable, they maybe don’t know any different. Well, it’s not acceptable. It can’t keep happening. It needs to be called out again and again. Here we are living in 2021 and you still get stuff like homophobic abuse going on. That’s the sort of stuff that — rightly — can make you lose your job. And you’d be banned from most [social media] platforms. I don’t think people should get away with sectarianism or racism or homophobia. I don’t think any player should have to face that.

I’d certainly hope Hibs would do that [ban supporters] if they saw any fan doing stuff like that. I know other clubs would. Recently, quite rightly, we’ve seen people getting punished for racist abuse. I know that racism is a bigger, wider, more global issue, after everything that has gone on over the last couple of years. But I don’t see the difference with sectarian abuse, or when it comes to singling someone out because of their race or sex or religion or gender. It still hurts people the same way. And there are still too many people out there who think they can get away with it.”

During the article Graham Spiers makes no reference to the source of the abuse- Ibrox fans. There has been no comment from Stewart Robertson about the abuse aimed at Porteous.

Following two partial stadium bans by UEFA for racist actions the club hastily launched Everyone, Anyone, a box ticking exercise to be seen to be doing something, anything.

In March this year, following defeat from Slavia Prague they jumped on board the anti-racism bus with all sorts of claims of zero tolerance.

Earlier this year hundreds of fans were filmed singing The Famine Song mocking the Irish Famine and wanting people of Irish descent to be removed from Scotland. The Union Bears have held presentations with Connor Goldson and Steven Gerrard since that incident in Glasgow city centre.

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6 comments

  • Terry Thomas says:

    Well done for speaking out, SG was wrong to comment like he did, he never mentioned the tackles his players make and nothing is said. Also on the abuse the players get from Sevco fans it terrible and again SG or any of the players come out and condem it. If it was a Sevco player it’s on every TV news channel and every newspaper, why is that?
    They won’t say anything against there supporters

    • Dora says:

      It’s amazing how sevco supporters never seem to hear the bile all around them at the bigot dome, when it’s called out..!!
      Even their own supporters get abused when they call it out…wasn’t us, rarely happens, liars, exaggerating bla bla bla
      Hope the spotlight remains on sevco and their problematic/racist support.

  • Johnny says:

    Good on sonHH

  • Joseph Mcaleer says:

    Again very well put,but with the “authorities”total silence,why won’t they start handing out fines to the offending club as it’s so blatantly obvious who are the racists, as for the Bearsden based “referee” who’s allegience is to Sevco through school based activities. His Honest Mistakes will continue.

  • Peter Cassidy says:

    The bigot club is supported mostly by bigots and racists thats the problem has been for decades and the club would not survive other wise if they tried to really stop these vile fans attending their home matches or away matches thats situation they are in now and its not going to change anytime soon Scotland has a problem regarding race and religion and its only the scottish government and society that can correct it so nothing will happen.

  • Chris says:

    Its no coincidence that Goldson doesn’t want to sign a new contract, the abuse he took from the Klanbase over taking the knee was horrendous, anyhun everyhun the motto of a dying breed HH

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