Hibs manager Jack Ross has hit out at vile trolls who have sent abusive messages to Easter Road defender Ryan Porteous after his red card in the defeat by Rangers before the international break, insisting people with a “platform” online need to make sure they don’t “exaggerate or misrepresent things”.
Porteous has, according to Ross, been subjected to sectarian abuse, homophobic abuse and people hoping the 22-year old “dies of a tumour” and the Easter Road manager has been livid at what he’s seen and read.
The Hibs boss launched a staunch defence of Porteous’ disciplinary record as he took aim at the “complete misrepresentation” of the incident that saw him dismissed against Rangers.
“I think those who have that platform need to be careful not to exaggerate or misrepresent things,” Ross said.
“I have seen what a 22-year-old had to deal with because of that.
It was a tackle, that’s all it was. People can have their opinion on how bad a tackle it was, that’s football, but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the way there was a complete misrepresentation of it by people who used inflammatory language without thought. It definitely stoked a stronger reaction.
“His disciplinary record last season was outstanding but people don’t want to hear that. In the current climate, when we are quick to highlight some other forms of abuse, it is terrible what he has had to put up with.
“He is a young man, who has had to deal with the professional disappointment of the way the game panned out but it is the other stuff he has had to deal with that’s inappropriate and we shouldn’t wash over it as though it is acceptable. The abuse, and people talking about him dying, that goes beyond the pale.
“Some people discussed it in a rational, balanced manner, as you would expect. But some people didn’t and blew it all out of proportion.
“Because of that a 22-year-old was subjected to the most dreadful abuse in the aftermath. I have seen it and it is disgusting. I have seen sectarian abuse, homophobic abuse, people telling him they hope he dies of a tumour.
“You can say that came in the aftermath of the incident or you can say it is in the aftermath of the way some people spoke about it but I have to be protective of him.”
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