Former Western Sydney Wanderers striker Kerem Bulut has backed planned protests by the Wanderers and Victory supporters this weekend.
Both Melbourne Victory and Western Sydney supporter groups have announced their intention to walk out of the stadium en masse during their clashes against Adelaide and Central Coast.
The protests are in response to controversial comments by some portions of the media regarding fan behaviour and also the leaking of a document containing the names of 198 fans who have been banned from A-League matches.
Bulut, who played 13 matches for the Wanderers last season before joining Greek Super League club Iraklis, has backed the fans' response and says people should not be trying to curb the passion that the fans bring to the game.
“The fans work all week and at weekends go out to relieve their stress and support their team. I don’t understand why there's such a big fuss from people trying to tear the game down,” Bulut said.
"The fans have every right to make a statement. Why should they just sit back and let people talk trash about the game walk all over the sport?
"Some people don’t like the fact the game is growing and Wanderers have such a huge supporter base that has built up over a very short time.
"Do people just want fans to go to games and sit down quietly and watch? They want to destroy the passion for football and turn people towards other codes.
“Making a noise and showing your passion is what the game is about. As a player, if I don’t have that fire then I don't do as well.
"The FFA has to help the fans and be more lenient and understand them more.
"You don't see it in other countries, why in Australia? It's ridiculous and it has upset me.
"People should let the game grow and get behind it. It's an Australian sport and it's going to benefit the country.
“For Alan Jones to refer to compere A-League fans with terrorists in Paris is unbelievable. I've never heard anything like it. It's quite shocking.
"He knows nothing about football and is there trying to rip the game apart."