Derry’s James McClean has been labelled as “scum” for refusing to turn and acknowledge the British national anthem before a pre-season friendly match for West Bromwich Albion in the USA.
Twenty-six year-old Republic of Ireland and West Bromwich Albion player, McClean, has been subjected to abuse in the past after he refused to wear a remembrance poppy as he felt it would be “disrespectful” to all of the people who died at the hands of the British army in the North during the Troubles.
This latest incident took place before a friendly fixture between West Bromwich Albion and Charlestown Battery in North Carolina on Friday.
Since images, which appear to show McClean standing with his head bowed and looking in a different direction to his team mates, appeared on social media over the weekend the Creggan Heights born footballer has been subjected to a tirade of abuse.
Some labelled him as “scum” whilst others went as far as to compare him to an Islamic extremist.
The response to McClean’s actions wasn’t completely negative. Some described him as “brave” and “principled”.
McClean, who joined West Bromwich Albion from Wigan Athletic this summer, wrote an open letter to then Wigan Athletic chairman, Dave Whelan, last season explaining why he chooses not to wear a remembrance poppy.