FORMER England and Arsenal footballer Ian Wright has forgiven an Irish teenager who sent him a string of racist messages on social media.
18-year-old Patrick O'Brien, from Tralee, Co. Kerry, astonishingly decided to racially abuse Wright after being let down by a game version of the star while playing FIFA on his playstation.
The teenager sent 20 "crass" messages to Wright's Instagram account back in May, before the Match of the Day presenter published the vile abuse online.
O'Brien later handed himself in to a local Garda station, and pleaded guilty to charges of harassment.
He appeared in court this week.
"I know I'm not meant to look at them but these messages still hit me so hard man," Wright wrote on Instagram back in May.
"This is a child! This kid has a direct line into me & is able to send this without any worry."
The string of hateful messages included expletive-ridden death threats, threats against Wright's family and slurs including the n-word.
"If I get coronavirus I will cough in your face and give you a death sentence," read one of O'Brien's messages.
However, in an impact statement dated last week, Mr Wright said that he had forgiven the Irish teenager.
"Patrick, I forgive you. I believe there is redemption for everyone," he said.
"I hope that you and also those that either taught you or enable this hate will learn from this and change for the better."
It's understood that O'Brien reached out to apologise to Wright shortly after his behaviour was called out.
The 18-year-old has been remanded on bail until a full probation report has been received.
He will reappear in court in January 2021.