by Nia Griffiths
Petr Cech’s statement to the Chelsea fans on Monday went down about as well as could be expected.
The now ex-Chelsea goalkeeper released a statement on Twitter as the deal to Arsenal was announced. It thanked the fans for their unwavering support, particularly during the last season when he was demoted to the bench, and the Chelsea owner, Roman Abramovich for allowing him the chance to leave while remaining in the Premier League.
However, as was to be expected, the Chelsea fans didn’t take kindly to their goalkeeper leaving to their London rivals and most took to Twitter to voice their hostility.
Insults including ‘snake‘ and ‘traitor‘ were thrown about, as well as some considerably more colourful language, which was also directed at his family.
The classy fans even went on to make death threats against him and his loved ones. Lovely.
At first, I thought this was just the media blowing a couple of comments from a loud minority out of proportion, as they love to do with football fans, but after a search on Twitter I was disturbed to find an overwhelming majority of the tweets directed at the Czech international were venomous.
Many tried to justify their words by comparing it to when Robin van Persie left. The situation with Van Persie was entirely different – he left at the peak of his career after we’d nursed him through eight years of injury. Cech was benched and not being played – he wanted playing time, not more cash. Saying this, under no circumstances are death threats ever okay – these I will not condone in the slightest.