AFL star: ‘They are disgraceful humans!’
AFL stars have lashed out as the disturbing trend of racist trolling once again reared its ugly head in the footy world.
Channel 7 AFL posted a video on its Instagram account posing the question of whether West Coast star Liam Ryan would be rubbed out after being reported for a jumper punch on Brisbane's Darcy Gardiner in the Lions' shock win over the Eagles on Saturday.
Some disturbing, racist comments were written in response to the post. One said: "Where did they get this monkey from Melbourne zoo" while another, posted by someone with a racist user name, added: "The monkey should be banned for life."
Ryan's West Coast comrade Nic Naitanui slammed the "fools" responsible for the vile remarks while GWS co-captain Phil Davis and Lions midfielder Mitch Robinson were among others to blow up.
In response to Naitanui's tweet, Davis wrote: "They are disgraceful humans!"
Robinson blasted the incident as "absolute bulls**t".
The latest controversy comes after North Melbourne star Majak Daw and Adelaide legend Eddie Betts were targeted with racist slurs in the pre-season. This month a photo of Daw playing with teammate Jed Anderson's child at a clash between the Kangaroos and St Kilda was posted to the AFL's official Facebook page and prompted an abhorrent comment.
"What a frightening experience for the youngster. Face to face with a gorilla," the comment read.
A Twitter user took a screenshot of the comment and posted it online while slamming the person behind it. The comment looked like it came from a profile that may have been a spoof account.
"What an absolute piece of s**t you must be to post this rubbish," the Twitter user wrote. "And then there are those that 'like' or 'laugh' in reply. Sad really."
Betts had earlier called out a user's racist comment on the Crows' Instagram account, prompting an angry backlash from the footy community as players and officials stood up for Betts.
Someone wrote "monkey see, monkey do" on a post that showed Betts entering Marvel Stadium for the AFLX tournament and the 32-year-old highlighted the shocking remark on his own social media profile.
"When will it stop, why can't we just play footy? Why can't we just all get along," Betts wrote.
Former AFL player turned radio host Ryan "Fitzy" Fitzgerald slammed the person behind the racist gibe as the "lowest of the low".
"If you don't think that comment was racially motivated and totally directed at Eddie you need to take a good hard look at yourself," Fitzgerald tweeted.
"Stop the bulls*** and take it on face value."
Geelong star Patrick Dangerfield called it "cowardly" while Western Bulldogs player Easton Wood said there is "no place in the game or society for this disgusting rubbish".
Port Adelaide's Jack Trengove added: "This is horrible! It has to stop."