Abuse victims not ‘proper men’

Eric Bristow

Eric Bristow has been criticised for his comments on the football sex abuse scandal

Former darts world champion Eric Bristow has drawn condemnation on social media for suggesting football abuse victims are not “proper men”.

More than 20 ex-footballers have come forward with allegations of historical child sex abuse in the sport, and five police forces are investigating claims.

But Bristow, 59, questioned why they did not stand up to their abusers.

Ex-Crewe player Steve Walters, who is among those to come forward, said he was “disgusted” by Bristow’s remarks.

Writing on Twitter, Bristow, who was made an MBE in 1989, said darts players were “tough guys” and footballers “wimps”.

He added the victims should not be able to look themselves in the mirror for not “getting their own back” on their abusers.

Several former footballers have waived their right to anonymity in order to go public and raise awareness of alleged historical abuse in football, a step which has won praise from politicians, sport administrators and abuse charities.

Walters has alleged he was abused as a youth player by convicted paedophile and former Crewe coach Barry Bennell.

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