SHAY Logan is not a person likely to shy away from controversy.

Which is why he has met a comment from a Twitter troll head-on and taken the opportunity to insist that racism – in this case directed at him – cannot be eradicated.

The Aberdeen defender, referenced in a Tweet over an incident which took place five years ago when he was subjected to racist abuse from Aleksander Tonev

during a game against Celtic, says he can’t understand why some people feel the need to mention the colour of somebody’s skin during an argument.


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The former Manchester City academy full-back, under contract at Pittodrie until the end of next season, was on the receiving end of a vitriolic troll after he uploaded a picture of someone without teeth and asked: “What city in Scotland am I from?’

The response, from a social media user called Robert, was unequivocal: “Tonev was right.”

The Bulgarian, now back in his homeland with Botev Plovdiv, was banned for seven matches after he lost an appeal against racial remarks directed at Logan, who has spoken at length about racism on and off the football pitch.

“I just don’t think you can stop it,” he said. “It’s not just in football. We play football, we watch it, we are around it, but it is everywhere. It happens in tennis, Grand Prix, rugby. Gay people are called this and that, too. When people are different, not because they are black or Asian, someone feels the need to mention it.”

Tonev, a Bulgaria international winger who was on a season-long loan at Celtic from Aston Villa when the incident happened in October 2014, denied racially abusing Logan, who insisted that he wasn’t affected by his opponent’s behaviour.

He admitted, however, that he could not understand the outburst.

“When I have an argument with someone it never crosses my mind to describe the colour of someone’s skin,” he said. “He is just a different person to me. I feel sorry for those people sometimes.

“When the incident happened with Tonev it didn’t affect me. I wasn’t mad; I just thought to myself ‘we’re playing football in 2014, how does this happen? What has affected you that you feel the need to say that?’”

But the ex-Brentford player believes racism is on the rise, possibly, in part, because of increased publicity and TV exposure.


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He added: “I just wonder: are people happy with themselves? Are they happy being white, black, Asian, gay, not gay?

“If they are, then why do they feel the need to have a go at someone else because of what they are or what colour they are? It doesn’t make any sense.”

Logan 31, from Wythenshawe, Manchester, pointed to recent racial abuse of Raheem Sterling and the stand the England star took against it.

Nonetheless, he was adamant that, despite the Manchester City front man using his high profile to speak out on the issue, it would make little difference.

Sterling, who became a prominent figure in the debate over how racism in football is handled and highlighted the discriminatory perception of black people in the media and in society, has encouraged more footballers to speak out if they suffer racist abuse, but added that he would not be in favour of them walking off the pitch in protest.


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This came after he was allegedly abused in an away game at Chelsea. He also tugged at his ears in front of the Montenegro fans who aimed racist taunts towards his England team-mate Danny Rose during the European Championships qualifier in Podgorica.

Logan said: “Sterling shouldn’t have to do that. It shouldn’t be a thing, but it is and he has a platform where he has so many followers because he plays for the biggest club in the world. People listen to players like that, but racism is never going to stop. How can it?

“If you are in the vicinity of 70,000 people and one person decides to be racist, how can you stop it? If it’s not him it will be someone else.

“In some instances, it’s where a person has been brought up or what they have been taught, but mostly it’s stupid people who just want to say the worst possible thing they can.”