What abuse of Portsmouth defender says about modern football

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‘When it rains it pours,’ tweeted Christian Burgess in the aftermath of his mistake at a sodden Fratton Park on Saturday.

It was a costly error of judgement which led to the penalty which allowed Wycombe to leave PO4 with a point last weekend.

Pompey defender Christian Burgess. Picture: Habibur Rahman

Pompey defender Christian Burgess. Picture: Habibur Rahman

‘Got to have broad shoulders in this game. Thanks for the messages - we keep going #pma #pup,’ finished the defender’s social-media post.

Although the majority were telling Burgess to keep his chin up, not all all of the posts aimed directly at him were of a positive nature.

In fact, one foul-mouthed tirade well and truly crossed the line of acceptability.

Airing frustration at Burgess’ error is one thing, and you would’ve found me chuntering just before 5pm on Saturday over the decision to give Fred Onyedinma the chance to go to ground and win his side’s late spot-kick.

But taking that process to picking up phone and launching abuse directly via Twitter is something else all together - and is typical of an issue which has become endemic in the culture of football supporters.

The desire for fans’ individual voices be heard is part of the make-up of the modern follower.

Back in the day a smart quip on the terrace which raised laughs was good enough to have a punter dining out on his delivery over post-match pints.

The modern-day equivalent is one of the beauties of social media, but the evolution has brought the dark art of attaining infamy through bating into play.

It’s the instant accessibility to players which proves all-too-tempting for those who derive pleasure from prodding for a reaction.

Of course, it’s a players’ prerogative whether they expose themselves in such a manner, and it is the norm for them to stay under the parapet in the face of negativity.

So credit goes to Burgess for, in a manner of speaking, fronting up after his error.

It’s a shame, however, people seek notoriety by aiming to make the most noise and sticking the boot into a player who has done as much as anyone to try to get Pompey back on the map – both on and off the pitch.

Thank heavens, then, for the majority whose instinct is to try to soften a kick aimed at the nether regions of one of their players.

It’s those people who helps to reaffirm your belief in the behaviour of the modern-day football fan.

Jesus! What is it about Wycombe?

What is it about when Wycombe come to Fratton Park?

Okay, I guess if you asked Gareth Ainsworth to put the razor away and gave him some robes and a sandal he’d make a more than passable Jesus.

But that still doesn’t explain the biblical rainfall every time the Chairboys come to town.

The conditions and surface water, which played no part in the handling of the game by inept ref Craig Hicks, were a considerable factor in proceedings by the end of the clash on Saturday.

But they still couldn’t attain the levels of the thunderstorm in October 2013, which saw the game between the two sides abandoned amid the worst weather many can remember at Fratton Park.

That left the tunnel flooded and Roly the steward - a fixture at the end of Frogmore Road - drenched in a torrent up to his knees under the mock-Tudor facade.