We all know James McClean is a hard nut.
One to never shirk a tackle, one to always make the hard runs, constantly putting his body on the line for the team he is playing for.
It is why managers sign him and play him.
Not a gifted as some other players he makes up for it with the heart and fight he puts into every match he plays.
But the biggest fight he has is against the sectarian fools who chant and abuse him on a weekly basis when he is playing for his club.
No matter where he goes, he gets abuse that if it was directed at a player because of their skin it would be lambasted and ridiculed from all corners.
The perpetrators would be identified and brought to court and banned from attending football matches for a long time.
But with the abuse directed at McClean there is a sense that authorities were very much ignoring the problem.
It was only one player, and some might have thought he was bringing it on himself.
McClean has long refused to play with a poppy on his jersey during games which fall around Remembrance Sunday which pays tribute to members of the British Army.
It is a view and decision he made as a proud son of Derry who saw the injustices and atrocities the Catholic people of the city suffered at the hands of the British soldiers who patrolled the streets during The Troubles.
He never made a big song and dance about it. He accepts that there will be people who do not accept his view.
But they don’t. And it seems like supporters just jump at the chance to abuse the Derry man.
But it seems like the authorities are finally sitting up and taking action.
In a recent game McClean was playing for Stoke City against Huddersfield.
Sectarian chants were allegedly aimed at 30-year-old McClean.
An announcement was made over the public address system at Huddersfield’s John Smith’s Stadium warning supporters about their offensive behaviour.
Huddersfield said they would be investigating the allegations.
Barnsley were charged over alleged sectarian abuse directed at McClean in their Championship game in November.
Last weekend the sectarianism raised its ugly head yet again when McClean was the subject of more abusive anti-Irish and sectarian chants from Millwall fans during their game against Stoke.
It looks like it all finally come to a head and the powers that be are no longer able to just sit by and watch it happen.
Football’s anti-racism group Kick it Out have backed McClean following the recent incident while the Professional Footballers Association (PFA) have said it would be taking action following the increase in sectarian abuse McClean is facing.
The PFA said they will be fully supportive of McClean and will be discussing the matters with the Football League and the referees’ body.
But is it all a bit too little too late?
Something should have been done a lot earlier.
And just like with the fight to kick racism out of football is the will really there or is all just one big token gesture?
Yes, there is a lot of work going into the fight against racism but how long will it take before it seeps down through all the levels of football and is final eradicated.
The threat of players walking off the pitch over racist abuse is seen as a last resort. Everybody just wants to see a game of football being played.
England’s games against Bulgaria in the Euro 2020 qualifiers was a prime example of that. After numerous warning about racist chanting, the players remained on the pitch. There are only meant to be two warning before the referee stops play.
But until a team does walk off and robs the supporters of what they have paid money to see the next step in the fight is still waiting to be taken.
And in terms of McClean and the sectarian abuse, the same needs to be done. Solidarity from all those around him and show the idiots in the stands that they will no longer get away it.
It seems to be getting that way. After years of the taunts, jeers and abuse the authorities are seeing that they have to deal with it.
Just how well they deal with it, we will have to wait and see.
They have a long way to go on the fighting racism front, and I’m afraid fighting sectarianism is some way behind that.
Let us hope steps are taken to fight the hate that spews from the stands on a weekly basis.
McClean just wants to play football. He doesn’t deserve what he is subject to.