Newcastle boss Steve Bruce says he’s been the target of death threats online, but only found out about a history of such comments from his children this week.
The former Manchester United captain is not on social media, with his family, including son and former footballer Alex Bruce, receiving them on his behalf.
Bruce made the revelation on the same day eight authorities in English football came together to demand more action from Facebook and Twitter, in a letter which claims their platforms have become a “haven for abuse”.
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The Magpies head coach has not been a universally accepted appointment by supporters since he arrived in 2019, and was told he had received death threats after talking about a similar situation involving referee Mike Dean.
"I don't go on (social media), but of course people close to me do and they are sensitive towards their father, of course. Yep, I've had that to deal with”, said Bruce.
We've got to police it better and there are some vulnerable people out there. When I see the nature of some of it, it's totally and utterly vile. Some of the stuff I've had has been obscene. You feel the hatred and something has to be done.
"For everybody, these big companies have to police it better and find out who these idiots and morons are who send this vile abuse and ensure they are punished.
The abuse I've had, death threats and all this sort of stuff - when I see the referee become a target for it because he has made a mistake, people threatening his life, it's absolutely obscene and totally ridiculous.
When asked about how bad the abuse has been, Bruce said it was tough to read: “It's really horrible stuff, which I couldn't really get my breath with, really, things like someone saying they hope I die of Covid and all of this."
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Meanwhile, Bruce says striker Callum Wilson faces up to eight weeks out after tearing his hamstring in Saturday’s 3-2 Premier League win over Southampton.
The England international has scored 10 goals since arriving from Bournemouth last summer, a tally which has helped them stay 10 points above the relegation zone.
The Newcastle manager says the injury is more serious than they initially expected: "We hoped it was a grade one, something like two or three weeks. Unfortunately, it's worse than that, so we'll have to be without him for the best part of six weeks, eight weeks.
"We'll not put a timescale on it, of course, but it's a bad tear in his hamstring, so it's devastating news for all of us, of course."
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