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Hibs manager Lee Johnson and club legend Lewis Stevenson have revealed the difficulties faced by footballers and managers as a result of online abuse.

The club’s record league appearance holder said: “It’s hard, I’ve been that fan as well, where I’ve probably said things like ‘he’s rubbish, he’s not good enough’.

“It is easy to slip into that. I don’t think it’s until you meet people personally and you speak to them that you realise (that it’s wrong).

“There will be people that give me pelters all the time, then meet me in the street and be nice to me. It’s just kind of part and parcel of it.

“On radio, talk shows, podcasts you hear people talking… it is hard to hear sometimes. It’s something that you need to deal with.

“I’m sure it makes you a better and stronger person mentally being able to deal with that. It’s something that maybe 5 or 10 years ago did affect me but now it’s like water off a duck’s back. I can take it now.”

The Hibs boss added: “I will always try and give my experiences, having come through the eras if you like. As a manager, it has changed a lot from a player to manager.

“When I first started playing, there was no twitter, no ammo really for people to fire into managers and players.

“At the start of my career, we used to mix with fans in pubs and relationships with reporters were very different, it was often based on trust.

“The way the media gets paid now is very different to how it was sort of 10/15 years ago and sensationalism, unfortunately, is a key factor in driving sales.

“That’s something that we have to deal with, it’s not always nice but it is the way of the world.”

Yesterday, Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale published an article detailing his own personal struggles with online abuse and media criticism sparking members of the global football community to share their own experiences.

The manager continued by explaining how he deals with fan and media criticism.

He said: “I don’t think it’s going to change anytime soon if I’m honest with you, so I think resilience is a key quality of any manager but also any football player.

“It’s not just in the written word, you know, it’s face to face as you see sometimes. You have to have a good support group, that’s really important.

“You have to be able to trust your staff members, family, friends and trusted crew to be able to notice your sort of feelings at the time and have somebody to be able to talk to

“But I dunno, I’m still here.”

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