We call ourselves fans. We love this sport more than anything in the world. I would give up anything to see Newcastle United win the Premier League. That's called being a fan. We read the news and follow the club day in and day out no matter what. We call ourselves fans.
But do fans insult the team to the point where it's called abuse? I may verbally abuse my television when I'm watching a match with poor mistakes, but never would I dream of taking to Twitter, Facebook, or whatever other social media outlet the players use and start verbally abusing them. It's uncalled for.
Matz Sels joined Newcastle United from Belgian side Gent for £4.3m. That's a good deal for a keeper of his skill. Yeah, he made a mistake, but overall, he's done better than most do when they're just starting out in the English leagues. Newcastle is where they are right now because of him. We owe it to Matz Sels to be patient. But more importantly, he has quickly earned our respect.
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But respect seems foreign to those telling Matz Sels to kill himself, or that he should try to break his leg so Karl Darlow can take the top spot. Insults like these are uncalled for, and they're not from true fans of the club.
Manager Rafa Benitez has told Matz Sels to avoid the social media trolls, but I can't help but side with him over the deletion of his Twitter account. It becomes a distraction when fans begin to get aggressive.
When Matz Sels joined this club, he praised the size of it, and he praised us, the fans. He's given more to this club in the short time that he's been here than we have our entire lives. And while you can disagree with that statement, I'm sure we can all agree, a true fan stands by their team, and doesn't take to insults.
Are we truly the greatest fanbase in the history of football? How can we call ourselves the greatest fans when we have people who will go out of their way to bully those who give us so much of their lives?
Let's stand by our players, not give them flak for a mistake that has been made by others in more important circumstances. Let's be disappointed in the result, and remember it's a team sport. Everyone on the club is at fault, but no one deserves to be singled out.