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Betts the target of racial abuse

May 6, 2020 3:10 pm in by

EDDIE Betts has been racially abused online three times this year but is determined to continue being an Indigenous leader in the face of vicious taunting.

The veteran Carlton livewire, who is in his 16th AFL season, wants to leave a legacy for young Indigenous footballers to feel safe in professional sport.

One of the AFL’s greatest small forwards, the former Adelaide champion has been racially abused countless times throughout his 316-game career.

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There have been multiple slurs directed at Betts every year during the past four seasons, including in a game against Port Adelaide in 2017.

“People make fake accounts and they racially abuse the hell out of you,” Betts told Phil Davis’ ABC podcast.

“It’s happened to me three times already this year. We’ve tried to find them; we’ve already spoken to the AFL integrity department.

“It’s kind of hard because once they do it, they delete it.”

Betts says he and other players “feel guilty” about not supporting Adam Goodes enough when the Sydney legend was subjected to continued racial abuse towards the end of his AFL career in 2015.

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“We were only seeing the stuff that was happening on weekends and we kind of all feel guilty after watching the (The Australian Dream and Final Quarter) documentary for the first time that we didn’t help enough,” Betts said.

“I think (young players are) scared because of what happened to Goodesy; they think it’s going to happen to them.

“When I got racially abused last year I had Patrick Dangerfield, Alex Rance coming out and backing up myself.

“If you racially vilify me, I’ll call you out and happy to talk about it, but some other Indigenous kid may be too scared to talk about it.”

(C) AAP 2020

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