Had Manchester United keeper David De Gea, Arsenal shot-stopper Petr Cech or Man City no.1 Joe Hart been struck by a coin thrown from an opposition fan – just seconds before they faced a last-minute penalty – there would have been national uproar.
In fact, just last month the football community was rocked by news that West Brom midfielder Chris Brunt was hit by a 50p coin thrown from behind the goal.
The nation was outraged, and rightly so. So why, when Fleetwood Town shot-stopper Chris Maxwell received a cut above his eye after an object was thrown at him from the stand behind the goal has the incident been largely ignored outside Lancashire?
Maybe Maxwell should have rolled around on the ground, acted like a prima donna, ignored Town’s relegation battle and refused to trudge back in the direction of the stand from which a missile had been projected towards his head.
That missile just missed his eye but Maxwell courageously wiped away the blood from his forehead, dusted himself down and made a great attempt to stop Che Adams’ equalising penalty.
This was all after referee Carl Boyeson allegedly told Maxwell the incident was his own fault because of his protests over the penalty.
Manager Steven Pressley was rightly seething after the game and spoke in shocked disbelief at the suggestion an official could react in such a way to an act of pure hooliganism.
If the referee did blame Maxwell for inciting the Blades fans behind the goal, what message does this give out to every football fan or youngster across the country? It is a poisonous thought that the actions of thugs could be excused when they could have cost a young professional an eye. There should be zero tolerance of such behaviour.
Fortunately, Town have a manager who will not back down. And with Lancashire police investigating, I hope the culprit is caught.
Maxwell’s wound may have healed but the whole business leaves a bitter taste.
And as Maxwell says, who could do something like that?