Bradford City’s Anthony O’Connor is in hot water after being filmed throwing the captain’s armband to the side of the field during their destruction this weekend.
The managerless Bantams slipped further into the relegation mire with a resounding 5-1 hammering at the hands of promotion chasing Portsmouth. It was a slow and faltering display from the side 23rd in the division, a result that leaves them six points adrift of safety.
O’Connor was given the armband after former Blackburn defender Paul Caddis came off, but was shown to throw it into the back of the net after heading a clearance away from goal. After the game, he issued a statement denying it was done as an act of disrespect.
“It has been brought to my attention by members of staff at the club that supporters are unhappy with me, after I removed the armband during the second half.
“Paul (Caddis) came off injured and I put the armband on in the dressing room – at half-time. The stitching was coming away and I had just headed the ball away for a corner.
“I was getting ready to defend the corner and took it (the armband) off. I put it in the goal.
“It is ridiculous to suggest I did it for any other reason. I would never disrespect the club or the captaincy. I wouldn’t have put it (the armband) on if I didn’t want to wear it.”
It’s fair to say some of their long-suffering fans were not happy with the player’s rebuke of the accusations, nor the act itself. Here’s a selection of their responses from Twitter this weekend.
I'm not buying it at all. Get him out. And anybody else who is disinterested, no pride or commitment to the shirt. I bet @billyclarke7 is gobsmacked to what he has come back to. A club built on values that have fast been forgotten
— Greg Ormondroyd (@G9_ORM) March 2, 2019
He has a serious attitude problem , had a rant at Aberdeen fans last season after he had a shocker .
— Deesidedon⭐⭐ (@deesidedon) March 3, 2019
The sheer fact that this comment is needed just sums up exactly where we are right now. It’s actually very sad. Whether he’s telling the truth or not, we’re sinking fast. #BCAFC
— Simon Clarke (@Clarkey2506) March 2, 2019
I'm surprised & disappointed that the club has put this nonsense out.
— Wendy Michallat (@wmichallat) March 2, 2019
Not convinced by a very long way! Off you go!
— Sean Moore (@Seanjames344) March 2, 2019
Who ever decided to put this out from City has just made a situation worse. What a ridiculous decision to put out a panic statement. Typical of the way the club arrogance and disconnection with fans currently. “We will put this out and the story will die down”.
— Mark Sugden (@sugden_mark) March 2, 2019
Maybe if he played like he cared. Showed fight and determination then everyone’s first thought would be must have been an issue with the band. The simple reason there’s been this reaction is because of his actions throughout the season
— Richard Burke (@burkeybcfc) March 2, 2019