Manchester United and Republic of Ireland midfielder Darron Gibson has experienced so much abuse on opening a Twitter account that he decided to close his account only a few hours later.
Gibson opened the account on Monday 25 April and was bombarded by a large amount of abusive messages – largely from his own fans.
Rio Ferdinand, Gibson’s team-mate at Manchester United, had signalled Gibson’s arrival on twitter, asking fans to ‘show him some love tweeps’.
A string of messages followed with comments stating that Gibson was afraid of football and the worst Manchester United player ever. One Man United fan commented it would delight him if Gibson was sold this summer.
The Derry-born player was also branded a traitor for not playing international soccer for Northern Ireland and instead declaring for the Republic of Ireland.
Within two hours of these messages flooding in Gibson closed his account. There have been conflicting reports since then over why Gibson left Twitter, with Ferdinand saying Gibson ‘came off because he couldn't be bothered with it.’
The Times writer Oliver Kay belives Gibson closed his account because of the large number of Twitter message alerts he was receiving on his mobile phone.
Twitter members subsequently launched a twitter campaign to encourage Gibson to return to the social network. Those comments can be read at: http://search.twitter.com/search?q=%23GetGibboBack
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