Former Rangers defender Joe Worrall has opened up about online abuse he says he still receives from some fans of the Ibrox club following his ill-fated loan spell.
The 24-year-old was a regular feature at the heart of the Gers defence during the 2018/19 season after arriving on loan from English Championship side Nottingham Forest, playing 32 times for the club and scoring once.
One of Steven Gerrard’s first signings at the club, Worrall arrived just weeks after the former Liverpool favourite had taken charge.
Worrall had fallen out of favour with the then Nottingham Forest boss, Aitor Karanka.
The former England U21’s time in Scotland offered the chance regular first team football, exposure on the European stage and the chance to compete for honours.
While Worrall admits he “loved” his time at Rangers, he has opened up about the online abuse he still receives, saying it leaves him with a “lingering cloud.”
In a feature-length interview with Sydney-based journalist Robin Chipperfield, the defender discussed his season-long loan to Rangers.
"I still get messages now on social media whenever I post anything from Rangers fans genuinely calling me every name under the sun,” he said.
"Genuinely, I loved my time there. Rangers fans are fantastic but they think they have a divine right to hammer and call blind any player that ever has a bad game for Rangers
“It definitely took a toll, not on my mental health – I’m earning thousands of pounds a week to play football and it’s part and parcel (of football), fans pay their money and if you underperform you get pelters for giving the ball away against Kilmarnock.
“Three years later, I’m still getting vile messages off Rangers fans. It’s unacceptable really. They won the league and they’re hammering a young lad who has done nothing but try his best.”
And though that “lingering cloud” still overshadows his time spent on the blue side of Glasgow, the defender said he “100 per cent came back to Forest a better player and a better leader.”
You can listen to the full interview here.