Oli McBurnie travelled in good nature to take in former side Swansea City’s away derby with Cardiff. He couldn’t have expected the backlash that has come with it.
After being caught on camera making a rude gesture, the Scotland and Sheffield United star has been given a warning by the FA over his actions. Common sense prevailed on this action, but how it got to that point boggles the mind.
On a weekend where he netted a crucial winner for Sheffield United which has aided their brilliant Premier League season, a pedantic issue has stolen the headlines.
McBurnie isn’t a robot and he can’t win
McBurnie did absolutely nothing wrong by going to visit his old side. Interaction with fans like this should be encouraged, but backlash like the Blades striker has received will only serve to deter players.
These clubs are split by divisions, it wasn’t like he was cheering on a league rival. McBurnie’s still mates with those at a club he spent four years of his professional career.
Often players are criticised for being out of touch with those in the stands. On occasions like this where they do take to the terraces, they are met with vitriol from all sides if they dare move a muscle in the wrong direction.
Most involved in football grew up attending matches and supporting a club, it’s why they pursued a profession in the game. Should they not be given the courtesy to indulge in those moments every once in a while?
Yes, perhaps McBurnie should have realised his role. He’s a £20 million footballer after all and will hit the papers and news websites left, right and centre. Many fans have rightly backed him in the wake of this blown out of proportion incident.
McBurnie’s a victim of being a person of interest in the modern world and what he supposedly did wrong has been lost in the eye of this tedious storm.