Barnsley have been applauded for reaching out to one of the club’s fans who spoke about his battles with depression and anxiety on social media.
Chief executive Gauthier Ganaye wrote a letter to Chris Ryder and gave details of the Mind charity – which deals with mental health – while also inviting the lifelong fan to “swing by any time”.
The English Football League partnered with Mind for the 2018-19 season and the governing body described the South Yorkshire club’s actions as “a touch of class”, while former England international Peter Reid also commented: “Class!”
Ryder posted a picture of the letter on Twitter with the caption saying: “best football club in the world”, which received over 16,000 retweets and 75,000 likes by Tuesday evening, while over 1,000 replies praised Barnsley’s goodwill gesture.
The letter read: “Dear Chris, sorry for sending you a letter at random, but I felt like I wanted to reach out to you and get in touch.
“I’ve noticed through social media that you’ve had a bit of a hard time recently, I’m not sure what it is but I hope everything improves for you as soon as possible.
“You’ve been a fan of the club for many years and always supported us, so we want you to know that if the favour needs returning and we need to support you, please do let us know.
“You are welcome to swing by any time. My office door is always open and we’ve finally got a new coffee machine, a huge thanks to Alfie Mawson for that! (Barnsley received a sell-on fee after the defender’s move from Swansea to West Ham this summer)
“Alternatively, you may have noticed the squiggle on the back of the player lettering on the shirts? It’s for the MIND charity. They are an EFL partner this season and do some really great work. I’ve included their contact details below.
“Keep supporting the Reds, Chris. We’ll keep supporting you.”
Barnsley currently sit top of the League One table with two wins from two as they hope to make an instant return to the Championship following relegation last season.