The Nigerian wasn’t given a warm welcome by supporters at Stadio Olimpico Grande in his first appearance after returning from a loan spell at Fulham
Ex-Chelsea defender Ola Aina has slammed Torino fans for giving him a hostile reception during their Coppa Italia first-round clash with Cremonese on Sunday, insisting “haters will only make me better”.
Aina made his first appearance for Torino since returning from a loan spell at Fulham in 2020-21 as they secured a penalty shootout victory over the Serie B outfit at Stadio Olimpico Grande.
The 24-year-old, who initially moved to Turin from Chelsea in 2019, was whistled and jeered from the home faithful throughout the 120 minutes, and took to social media to air his frustrations after the game.
What’s been said?
“To all the Torino fans that were booing or whistling whenever I got the ball tonight, THANK YOU,” Aina wrote on his official Twitter account. “Doubter and haters WILL only make me better, we move. As a club, we should always stay together no matter what.”
The Nigerian full-back later deleted the post, and Torino have yet to comment publicly on the incident.
Aina began his career at Chelsea back in 2015, having spent the previous eight years in the club’s youth system. He struggled for regular minutes, and went on loan to Hull City before Torino came calling in 2018.
The Italian club brought Aina in on loan before signing him on a permanent deal after an impressive debut season in Serie A, with the Blues receiving a £9 million fee.
The Nigeria international has since appeared in 69 games across all competitions for Torino, recording one goal and six assists, but he was loaned to Fulham last year to continue his development.
Aina made 31 Premier League appearances for the Cottagers, who ultimately suffered relegation to the Championship, before returning to Stadio Olimpico Grande to see out the remaining two years of his contract.