Liam Ryan has become the latest indigenous AFL star to be subjected to racism after a troll commented a picture of a monkey’s face on a photo of his three babies.
The West Coast Eagles player’s wife, Evana Hansen, was forced to defend the 23-year-old after he shared the post to Instagram on Thursday.
It’s not the first offensive remark Ryan has received and comes one year after a fan was given a two-year ban after he labelled the player a ‘monkey’ online.
Liam Ryan (pictured, with wife Evana Hansen) has become the latest Indigenous AFL star to be subjected to racism after a troll commented on a photo of his three babies
‘Here were f***ing go again,’ Ms Hansen wrote on Friday following the post.
‘Attack my babies, but noooo racism doesn’t happen in Australia.’
West Coast Eagles coach Adam Simpson also weighed in on the post, adding the whole team was supporting Ryan.
‘It’s so disappointing,’ he told reporters.
‘All we can do is educate. It’s not the first time it’s happened.
‘It’s not the first time, but it doesn’t hurt any less. We’re a very tight group and we’ve got his back.’
But after the news came to light, the person responsible for the comment claimed he was trying to describe the babies as cute.
‘(The user) is 16 years-old – he thought he was saying the babies are cute,’ Seven News reporter Anna Hay said.
‘His parents are devastated. They are indigenous and say they are often the target of racist attacks.’
A year ago an AFL fan was given a two-year ban after calling Ryan (pictured with his children) a ‘monkey’ online
The West Coast Eagles player’s wife, Evana Hansen (pictured, right), was forced to defend the 23-year-old after he shared the post to Instagram on Friday
Indigenous AFL stars have been sharing the offensive comments they receive online amid the global Black Lives Matter movement for racial equality.
Melbourne Demons defender, Neville Jetta, also had an emoji of a monkey posted on his most recent Instagram post.
The 30-year-old posted a photo of himself with an indigenous painting he received after marking his 150th game for the Demons on Friday.
‘Another racial comment but to me this time around … there needs to be a better system in place to track people like this and hold them accountable,’ Jetta wrote on his Instagram.
Melbourne Demons defender, Neville Jetta, also had an emoji of a monkey posted on his most recent Instagram post (pictured)
On Wednesday, indigenous Carlton Blues star Eddie Betts opened up about his experience with racism in the AFL.
In a candid interview with AFL360 on Fox Sports, Betts, 33, said he is ‘absolutely sick of copping’ racist abuse.
‘It hurts. It deeply hurts. And you think to yourself, why should I keep playing footy if I’m going to keep copping this? I want to make a change,’ he said.
Betts’ comments come just days after he called out a racist footy fan who used a picture of a chimpanzee while making a derogatory comment about him.
‘I thought, ‘what’s going to happen?’, ‘do I have to deal with it again?’ … it’s just tiring, fighting, fighting, fighting,’ he said.
‘It just keeps happening every year for the last ten years.’
Betts said he often cops racial abuse online, and even had a banana thrown at him during a game.
Betts predicted he would likely be subjected to more racial abuse ‘next week again,’ but said he continues to play football to take a stance against bigotry (pictured with wife Anna Scullie)
Sports fans in the US recently suggested racism was worse in Australia than America following Adam Goodes’ documentary.
There was an outpouring of support for the Sydney Swans great after The Australian Dream aired on ESPN on Wednesday night US time.
The powerful documentary looks back on the tumultuous end to the career of the dual Brownlow Medallist and premiership hero, where he was exposed to incessant taunting and booing.
Many were left with the belief racism was worse in Australia than in the US.
‘The treatment he received for being an indigenous Australian makes white Australia look like a bunch of southern crackers,’ one viewer wrote.
Another added: ‘Incredible story fantastically told about Adam Goodes, an Australian rules football player who stood up to generational racism & imperialism, but paid a price for it. A lot of Australians still need to get on the right side of this.’
Aboriginal AFL legend Adam Goodes (pictured) was exposed to incessant taunting and booing during the final stages of his career and forced his retirement in 2015