THE FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION (FA) has launched an investigation into an Instagram post by Ireland international James McClean, according to the BBC.
The Derry native, who has once again abstained from wearing a poppy in honour of the British armed forces who died in the line of duty, was subjected to vile verbal abuse from his own fans during Stoke’s 0-0 draw with Middlesbrough in the Championship on Saturday.Source: Crimes of Britain/YouTube
In response, 29-year-old McClean criticised that section of supporters on social media, calling them “uneducated cavemen”, while also quoting former IRA hunger striker Bobby Sands.
“They have nothing in their whole imperial arsenal that can break the spirit of one Irishman who doesn’t want to be broken,” McClean wrote.
Your abuse, your throwing things, your booing, do your worst. To the home fans that are actually educated and support me, thank you.
“To the section of uneducated cavemen in left hand corner of the Boothen End stand that want to song their anti-Irish song each game and call me a Fenian this and that… I am a PROUD FENIAN, no c**t will ever change that, so sing away.”
This afternoon, McClean has replied to news of the FA probe in bullish fashion with the post below.
Last week, Stoke released a statement to confirm McClean wouldn’t be wearing a Rememberance Day poppy, adding that it respected his decision.
“I know many people won’t agree with my decision or even attempt to gain an understanding of why I don’t wear a poppy,” McClean said at the time.
I accept that but I would ask people to be respectful of the choice I have made, just as I’m respectful of people who do choose to wear a poppy.”
Stoke added: “As a club we will be supporting the Royal British Legion’s poppy appeal by wearing the poppy on our home shirt in the fixture against Middlesbrough on 3 November and on our away shirt in the fixture against Nottingham Forest on 10 November. The club is proud of its close connections with the armed forces and have also invited members of the armed forces to join our remembrance at the Middlesbrough fixture.
“However, we recognise that the poppy means different things to different individuals and communities and (like the Royal British Legion) do not believe that anybody should be forced or even pressured to wear the poppy against their free will. James has informed us that he will not be wearing a Remembrance Day poppy in our next two games. We respect his decision and his right to follow his own convictions.”
The Stoke Sentinel is also reporting that the Potters will now hold internal discussions following this latest incident.
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