Leeds owner Massimo Cellino’s relationship with the club’s fans has hit a new low after the Italian’s sons abused supporters with expletive-laden insults on social media.
Ercole and Edoardo Cellino, both listed as directors of the club, responded to criticism from supporters with barbs of their own, with the latter understood to have apologised for his actions.
Massimo Cellino has come under increasing pressure from protest groups to sell the club in recent weeks and banned head coach Steve Evans from speaking to the media after Monday’s 4-0 defeat at Brighton.
Ercole called one woman a “whale” and told her to stop eating in an exchange on Instagram and she has been reported to have lodged an official complaint to the club.
In a separate incident on Facebook, of which the Daily Mail has photographs of the conversation, Edoardo called another fan a “moron” during a heated exchange and also used another derogatory term.
Edoardo later apologised in a statement to the Daily Mail, which said: “I would like to apologise for any offence that I have caused.
“After receiving a lot of abusive messages my emotions got the better of me and I reacted in a way that was unprofessional.
“I believe the messages were private but I know I should not have done this. I did not fully understand the severity of the words used as English is not my first language. Again, I can only apologise.”
The episode is sure to further damage Cellino’s relationship with fans with one group, ‘Time To Go Massimo’, urging him to sell the club.
The group put up anti-Cellino posters outside Elland Road and projected protest images against the Italian on to the stadium during the recent home match against Middlesbrough. More stunts are planned for forthcoming matches.
Press Association Sport has contacted Leeds for comment, with Evans set to face the media on Friday morning for the first time since Cellino said the Scot “talks too much”.