Palace defender Van Aanholt subjected to online racial abuse

Crystal Palace defender Patrick van Aanholt called for social media companies to take stronger action against racism on Friday after he shared a screenshot to illustrate the kind of vile abuse he has been subjected to online.

“This is not about me… I’ve got enough love and I’m blessed in my life to not let stuff like this upset me BUT it really ain’t on,” the Dutch defender wrote on Twitter.

“I stand for those that can’t defend themselves and have to deal with this… daily. SOCIAL MEDIA you are accountable for this… @instagram sort it out because we are sick and tired of being sick and tired.”

Palace, the Premier League and the Football Association did not immediately reply to a Reuters request for comment.

Van Aanholt’s Palace team mate Wilfried Zaha had previously called on social media platforms to identify and remove users who resorted to racist abuse after he was targeted last month.

The growth of social media has fuelled discriminatory abuse towards footballers in recent years.

On Thursday, the Premier League said that it would support Brighton Hove & Albion’s French forward Neal Maupay to bring legal action against an individual in Singapore who subjected him to abuse online.

The league set up a dedicated reporting system by which players, managers and coaching staff could flag up serious discriminatory online abuse.