Fabian Delph is reportedly furious with how Everton have handled the suspension of a first-team player earlier this week.
One of two senior Everton players absent as the team flew out to Orlando for the preseason Florida Cup, the 31-year-old Delph has been the subject of repeated online abuse.
This follows confirmation that a 31-year-old Premier League footballer had been arrested late last week on suspicion of child sex offences.
Widely believed at the time to be an Everton player, Delph's absence from the trip was a precautionary measure taken after he came into contact with someone who has since tested positive for COVID-19.
Nevertheless, the circumstances of his situation resulted in the former Manchester City player being subject to repeated speculation that he had in fact been suspended.
If you’re not going to disclose the name of who’s been arrested, you shouldn’t be disclosing the age of them either!
And make ppl start the guessing game,
It only leads to one thing, online trolling!
It’s not fair or right that Fab an he’s family have to go through this. 🤬🤬
— Bradley Johnson (@BradJohnson15) July 21, 2021
Although the arrested player in question cannot be named for legal reasons, The Athletic have reported that Delph is furious with how Everton have dealt with the situation.
In a statement released on Tuesday, the club confirmed that a first-team player had been suspended pending a police investigation, but provided no further details.
After contending with the widespread online speculation that he was the player in question, Delph is greatly unhappy with the club's failure to adequately clarify the situation and has made his feelings clear.
Following the club's statement on Tuesday, the former Leeds United player took to Instagram in an attempt to quell any further speculation.
His first post on the site for almost three months, Delph uploaded a photo of himself in preseason training with the caption: "Working hard in pre-season".
View this post on Instagram
Everton are due to take on Colombia's Millonarios in the semi-final of the Florida Cup early on Monday morning Irish time.