DECLAN RICE has been targeted for abuse online after tweeting a message of support for Aston Villa star Jack Grealish.
Grealish was attacked by a spectator who ran onto the pitch during Aston Villa’s Championship match with Birmingham City on Sunday, March 10th.
The incident occurred in the 10th minute of the game when a man ran past stewards in the home section and struck Grealish in the face.
Shocking scenes at Birmingham Villa game. Jack Grealish attacked on the pitch. pic.twitter.com/UailN7pwyY
— Michael O'Donoghue (@michaelod1888) March 10, 2019
The man, later named by police as 27-year-old Paul Mitchell, blew kisses towards the crowd as he was led away from the pitch.
Rice was among those to tweet a message of support for Grealish.
"Absolutely disgraceful what just happened to Jack Grealish," he tweeted.
Absolutely disgraceful what just happened to Jack Grealish😡
— Declan Rice (@_DeclanRice) March 10, 2019
Mitchell is English and his attack has little to do with the fact Grealish pledged his future to England despite playing for Ireland at youth level.
Even so, some Twitter users were quick to hit out at Rice in the wake of the message of support.
“You and Jack are very similar both rats,” one wrote.
You and Jack are very similar both rats.
— Padraig Noone (@pattyjoe16) March 10, 2019
“You’re next,” another warned.
— Eoin Watterson (@Eoin_Watterson8) March 10, 2019
“Hopefully your next”, one added with another chiming in similarly with: “You’re next tan.”
Your next Declan.
— Luca (@xLucaGG) March 10, 2019
You’re next tan ;)
— Joe O'Neill (@actingjoe) March 10, 2019
Hopefully your next
— Daire O'Brien (@ob_daire) March 10, 2019
It’ll be you next haha
— Patrick Moloney (@Patrick61229670) March 10, 2019
“Just been reported the Lad was wearing an Ireland jersey under his Top,” one joked.
Just been reported the Lad was wearing an Ireland jersey under his Top.
— stef mckeown (@stefites) March 10, 2019
“Ye have a lot in common,” another said.
Many were keen to highlight the fact the attack on Grealish was unacceptable though.
“No place for that in our game, disgusting,” one tweet read with another stating that a “lifetime ban is needed”.
No place for that in our game, disgusting
— Lester Ford (@lezford) March 10, 2019
Lifetime ban needed 🤦♂️
— Jack ⚒ (@jackarmitxge) March 10, 2019
Rice has so far failed to respond to the abusive messages online.
Mitchell is due in court today (March 11th).