If you carry scars from wounds suffered which were not your responsibility, you cannot be blamed.
You had to be around the early days of black and ethnic minority players breaking into top class football to appreciate just how vicious, how strident, how unforgiving, how ignorant the racism was.
When Paul Canoville took to the pitch at Crystal Palace on April 12th 1982, under six weeks past his 20th birthday, nothing had prepared him for the tsunami of abuse from his own Chelsea fans that was immediately hurled at him.
It carried on hideously. From bananas thrown on the pitch, monkey chants screeched at full volume by thousands, yes thousands, of ‘supporters’, to letters addressed to him at the club with razor blades in the envelope flap, it was incessant.
And it remained that way.