England striker Eniola Aluko affected by Twitter abuse

Women's World Cup 2011

  • Venue: Germany
  • Date: 26 June - 17 July

Coverage: Watch all England matches live on the Red Button and BBC Sport website (UK only); listen on BBC Radio 5 live; highlights on BBC Two; final live on BBC Three

Aluko hits back at Twitter critics

England striker Eniola Aluko has described the personal criticism she has received on Twitter following the 1-1 draw against Mexico as "poisonous".

The 24-year-old, who missed a hat-trick of second half chances, angrily responded to some of the tweets.

"It's part of the game but I don't particularly like negativity being directed at me, I think some people go a bit far," she told BBC Sport.

"It is quite poisonous and does affect me."

Aluko, a law graduate who plays her club football for the American team Sky Blue, has scored 11 goals in 56 international appearances, including three in the European Championship two years ago.

"When I'm in a World Cup you need to keep a positive frame of mind and head onto the next game," she added.

"I don't need poison being directed at me so there's a time when I might say something back.

I'm not going to beat myself up. The best strikers in the world miss as well as score

Eniola Aluko

"I'm a human being. If someone walked up to me and said something I think is out of order and not objective I might respond.

"I'm very passionate so there are times when I might have to tell people to save your negativity for somebody else. I don't need it right now".

England face New Zealand in their second Group B game in Dresden on Friday, and Aluko is determined not to dwell on the opportunities she failed to take against the Mexicans in Wolfsburg.

"I'm not going to beat myself up over the chances I missed. The best strikers in the world miss as well as score," she said.

"I might get two goals in the next game and I'm a hero. The main thing is getting into those positions. I was disappointed not to put one of those chances away but it happens.

"It's sometimes difficult to understand why people don't get behind the team - they're so quick to jump on the bandwagon and criticise - just get behind us.

If you put words on a social network they are there for ever aren't they

England coach Hope Powell

"It feels like people love the negativity - I'm not interested in people who've probably never kicked a ball in their lives."

Aluko is not the first footballer to receive negative comments on the social networking wesbite.

Manchester United midfielder Darron Gibson quit his account within hours after receiving abuse from other users, and Bolton captain Kevin Davies is another player who decided to stop Tweeting for similar reasons.

But despite the criticism, Nigerian-born Aluko says she will not be doing the same.

"I don't need to get off Twitter - a lot of these people hide behind their computers and make comments and yet they're the same people asking for your autograph, so it's not a big deal," she added.

Highlights - Mexico 1-1 England

"I responded to two people and I saw about 15 comments so there's a lot of people I ignored too which takes a lot.

"I find it annoying. I've now changed my phone so I don't get notifications so it's up to me whether I see it or not."

She also appreciates that incidents like this are more likely to occur following a boost to England's profile in the build-up to the World Cup.

"Bad press is sometimes good press - we're getting huge media attention and there's huge expectation on us so we've had a taste of what the men go through," she said.

England coach Hope Powell said: "Personally I don't use [sites like Twitter]. At times I'm sure they can be quite flattering and at times I'm sure they can be quite damning so I think the players need to be careful.

"What you say can go into the public domain and you can't retract it. You just have to be sensible but it's their choice - the thing is if you put words on a social network they are there for ever aren't they?"

New Zealand lost 2-1 to Japan in their opening match, but Aluko believes England will face a difficult game.

"They're very physical but we're aware of their strengths and how we can exploit them. It's a must win game but hopefully we'll take that pressure on and perform."