You’d think that after scoring six goals in five Serie A matches, Inter Milan captain Mauro Icardi would be loved by his fans.
However, we can assure you that certainly isn’t the case. In fact, it’s very much the opposite.
During Inter’s match against Cagliari at the San Siro on Sunday afternoon, supporters unveiled a banner branding their skipper a “vile piece of s***.”
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The whole banner read: “You use a child to justify yourself and fling mud at us... You’re not a man... You’re not a Captain... You are just a vile piece of s***.”
So, why are Inter fans so angry with their star striker? Let us explain.
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It dates back to February 2015 when Icardi and teammate Fredy Guarin went over to their supporters following a 3-1 defeat to Sassuolo. To apologise for their poor performance, the two players tossed their shirts into the crowd, only for them to be thrown straight back at them.
In Icardi’s new autobiography, the 23-year-old wrote about this incident - something that has incensed a group of fans.
The Argentine wrote: “I am angry because I played so little. The fans start to shout: they call us to come over to their section. I find the courage to face them, along with Guarin,” Icardi wrote in his book, ‘Sempre Avanti’ which was released this week.
“As I get closer, I receive insults and abuse of every kind. Attached to the netting is a kid who calls me: he wants my shirt.
“Considering his age, he could be my son: I take off my shirt and shorts and throw them to him, as a gift. This kid is in seventh heaven and I am pleased to see him so happy.
“A head of the ultras jumps on him to take away the shirt and throws it back at me. This is when I start insulting him: ‘Piece of ****, you are acting all arrogant with a little kid to show off to the rest of the curva [Inter Milan utras]? Do you think you’re hard?’
“In the locker room I am acclaimed as a hero, because nobody had ever faced off that way with one of the fan leaders.”
However, after the book was released, the Curva Nord released an official statement. It read: “We don’t want to go back over that day when his own teammates hauled him back by the neck to demand a less arrogant attitude towards the Inter population,” it read. “It is pathetic to read such things talking about us. In his book he writes: ‘I am ready to face them one by one. How many are there? 50, 100, 200? OK, record my message and let him listen: I’ll bring 100 criminals from Argentina who’ll kill them where they stand, then we’ll see.’
“He talks about helping little kids, then invents an incident that never happened to make himself seem superior to us, as if it weren’t obvious to all that we are the only Curva that helps kids design the choreography in the stands.
"You are finished with us. You're done. TAKE THE ARMBAND OFF, YOU CLOWN. Yes, that is what we demand."
It certainly doesn’t sound very good.