Football: Lion City Sailors' Stipe Plazibat makes police report following online abuse

The abusive messages Stipe Plazibat received called him a monkey and were also directed at his mother and wife. ST PHOTO: DESMOND WEE

SINGAPORE - Lion City Sailors forward Stipe Plazibat has filed a police report on Saturday (Aug 28) after receiving text abuse via social media platform Instagram on Friday.

The 31-year-old Croat, who has almost 3,000 followers on Instagram, tweeted a screengrab of the offensive messages which were sent to him after he had scored the equaliser in the 1-1 draw against Hougang United in the Singapore Premier League (SPL) on Friday night.

The abusive messages, which were sent to his and his club's Instagram accounts, called him a monkey and were also directed at his mother and wife.

The Sailors noted that "abusive messages, including one of a discriminatory nature" were directed at their player on social media but declined further comment as the matter is with the Police.

The authorities confirmed a report was lodged and investigations are ongoing.

Plazibat shared that while his wife Marija has been with him in Singapore, she returned to Croatia in July as she is due to give birth in October.

Last season's SPL topscorer, who has 14 goals in 16 games this season, also has not been home to visit his grandmother, parents and elder sister since December 2019 because of the pandemic.

He said on Saturday: "I am no global superstar, so I don't receive so many messages, and I usually try to answer everyone.

"I am so sad about this. I am not soft or a very sensitive person and I tend to forget abuse directed at me in two minutes, but not when you talk like this about my family. I'm not an attention seeker, but I can't let this go just like that.

"This guy, whoever he is, needs to learn his lesson and hopefully we can send a strong message to others who are tempted to do the same.

"Spreading hate and trying to bring a person down for whatever reason is not right, and this needs to be addressed."

After Plazibat made the incident public, he received numerous messages of support, including from fans of his former club Hougang.

He said: "I have been respectful to them, and they respect me back. I really appreciate it and it shows the vast majority are kind people."

In July, Singaporean teenager Derek Ng was sentenced to nine months' probation after pleading guilty to two counts of harassment. The 19-year-old had sent death threats to English Premier League footballer Neal Maupay through the Brighton forward's Instagram account in 2020.

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