Republic of Ireland defender Cyrus Christie has spoken out about a number of incidents where he was subjected to racist abuse while on international duty.
The Fulham defender, who has won 24 international caps, spoke about the abuse he has suffered during games. He also revealed an incident in which a young fan racially abused him after a training session in Dublin.
Speaking on Off The Ball, Christie said he had become used to the abuse.
“After the games I was getting racial abuse. I picked up on it but I wasn’t telling people about it. It’s funny. ‘Cyrus, you’re not Irish’, ‘you’re born in England’, or whatever it might be.
“I don’t see the likes of Richard Keogh or Harry Arter or Ciaran Clark or whoever it might have been that were born in England. But me, David McGoldrick, Callum Robinson – the three black lads – it’s coming at us. We’re the ones that are getting spoken about like that.
“That’s just one minor issue and people wouldn’t realise that because they’re not in our position.”
The 27-year-old also opened up on being racially abused by a young supporter after a training session in Dublin.
“It happened when I first joined up and it even happened one time at the training ground from fans standing outside. They were kids.
“This was one of my first couple of times [with the Republic of Ireland team],” he said.
“There were people outside at the training ground and someone just came up to me and said something racist and I was a bit shocked. The other lads refused to sign some stuff for the other people that were there. I was in shock because I didn’t expect it at the training ground.
“It’s not the first time and I’m sure it won’t be the last time. When people catch you by surprise it’s the worst. I’ve had it so many times, but you become accustomed to it.”