Ireland defender Cyrus Christie says he has been the victim of racism on numerous occasions
By Dev Trehan
Last Updated: 23/03/18 8:28am
Cyrus Christie insists the racist abuse he suffered in the wake of the Republic of Ireland's World Cup play-off exit was by no means a one-off.
The Fulham defender was targeted via social media after scoring an own goal in Ireland's 5-1 second leg defeat by Denmark at the Aviva Stadium in November which dashed their hopes of making it to Russia this summer.
Police were called in to investigate, but speaking ahead of the Republic's international friendly with Turkey on Friday, Christie said he was also forced to endure racist abuse after the four games that preceded the tie with Denmark.
"It happened in the four previous games as well, the Georgia and Serbia games - it happened over the course of a couple of months. It's one of those, you don't speak out because nothing does happen.
"You don't really hear it on the terraces. You get the odd person, but it's more social media, that's where they get brave. They wouldn't say it to your face. When they're hiding amongst the crowd, that's when they get brave.
"I've had a lot worse growing up from where I've come from and many more dangerous situations in my time. It was nothing to me."
Christie began his career at hometown club Coventry and had spells at Derby and Middlesbrough before moving to Fulham in January.
The 25-year-old full-back insists he will not allow himself to be too badly affected by racist abuse.
"I've had worse in my time, I've had 10 times worse. It's one of those, it still happens in this day and age," he said.
"Whether or not stuff gets done about it, whether or not it changes, who knows? It was one of those, I take it and move on.
"The police were on, but whether something will get done or not, I don't know. That's just the way it is. A lot of the time when stuff like this happens, nothing really gets done. A lot of these people are hiding behind different profiles.
"I've had a lot worse growing up, when I was in school, so for me it was water off a duck's back. I've moved on. I was more disappointed with the result than anything.
"If that's what they want to resort to, they can, it's sticks and stones at the end of the day. I'm not going to be too hurt by it."