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Wests Tigers co-captain Josh Reynolds has leapt to the defence of his biggest fan, who was the victim of abuse on social media this week.

Eleven-year-old Emmi Riley is a self-confessed Canterbury Bulldogs tragic. She also adores Reynolds.

Which is why she was on the hill at Brookvale Oval last Sunday afternoon with a "I love my Grub" banner cheering on her hero in his first game for his new club.

Her smiling face was plastered all over social media following the match, however she soon became the subject of criticism from a minority of Bulldogs fans questioning her loyalty to the club.

"They've never met me, they don't know me," an emotional Emmi said.

"They saw that I support the Bulldogs but I'm going to a Tigers game but that doesn't mean anything because Im there to support Josh.

"So since they've never met me, they can't say anything that I shouldn’t be supporting the teams."

Emmi Riley with Josh Reynolds.
Emmi Riley with Josh Reynolds. ©Nathan Hopkins/NRL Photos

When learning of the abuse hurled at Emmi, Reynolds jumped at the opportunity to meet with her this week, despite having to deal with the heartbreak of another injury setback himself.

Reynolds wanted to provide her with the reassurance she needed, taking aim at those people who hurt his biggest admirer.

"It's disgusting to be honest," Reynolds told

"To hear that from a young girl, these people need to think how she is thinking … good on her. She doesn't have to listen to what anyone else says. She's just enjoying the game. She's supporting me and that’s what she wants.

"For a grown man to say that to a young girl, they really, really have to have a good look in the mirror.

"It's obviously about supporting your team but the young girl just wants to have fun. If she wants to support 10 teams who cares?

"They're kids. Kids should be able to do whatever they want and enjoy the game. It really did get on my nerves when I heard people were making some bad comments. People just need to grow up and realise what they're saying."

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