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Coronavirus: Wave of support for Linfield player targeted by social media trolls

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A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park. Pic Pacemaker

A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park. Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 
A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been  tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days.

Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days. Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 
A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been  tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days.

Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days. Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 
A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been  tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days.

Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days. Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 
A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been  tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days.

Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days. Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 
A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been  tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days.

Pic Pacemaker

Pacemaker Press 11/03/2020 A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park , after A Linfield player has been tested positive for coronavirus , and that the ground will be closed for the next two days. Pic Pacemaker

A deep clean is underway at the National Football Stadium at Windsor Park. Pic Pacemaker

Social media users have come together to support a Linfield footballer diagnosed with coronavirus after he was targeted by trolls.

It was announced on Tuesday that the player, who is self-isolating, has contracted the virus.

Many social media users vented their outrage at the many "disgusting comments" the announcement was greeted with. Trolls posted pictures and videos of celebrations and memes mocking the player.

"We are disliked greatly in football rivalry and that's dead on, but this is disgusting," one user said.

Another added: "Let's hope the player gets well, this can happen to any player and probably will and it doesn't matter what club you are in."

A number of people called for the comments to be withdrawn.

"I'm no Linfield fan, but some of the abuse both sectarian and personal directed towards the affected player and his teammates is beyond sick," said another Twitter user.

"Some things are bigger than football. That's the shared future for all to see. I hope the Linfield player recovers and no one else gets it."

Windsor Park is undergoing a deep clean on Wednesday and Thursday in an attempt to limit the spread of the virus.

Linfield's home game against Larne on Saturday is set to be postponed as a result of the player's diagnosis.

Speaking on Tuesday Linfield FC chairman Roy McGivern said the club's priority is to look after the welfare of players and staff.

He said the news was "very unpleasant" and issues around football will be addressed in due course.

In a statement, the club said it was "taking advice from the relevant authorities and will provide an update when we have further details".

Health chiefs are recommending a two-week self-isolation period for anyone who has come into contact with a virus sufferer.

The Northern Ireland Football League (NIFL), set up a response group to the crisis on Monday.

"We will continue to communicate with the club and await further information from the health authorities before any further decisions or action are taken," said the statement from NIFL.

Belfast Telegraph