Ahead of England’s opening Euro 2020 match against Croatia the FA has released a statement urging fans who boo taking the knee to “reflect on the message you are sending.”
England’s players and the manager Gareth Southgate have already said that they will continue taking the knee before matches to protest social and in particular racial injustice.
However some fans have booed the gesture at recent matches and ahead of the Croatia game the FA released the statement.
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It says, “Tomorrow, our England senior men’s team will begin their Euro 2020 campaign at our home, Wembley Stadium.
“Major tournaments don’t come around very often and when they do, it’s an opportunity to unite friends, family and the country. This collective support is what spurs the team on during challenging moments and it gives them the best chance of succeeding.
“As the team has reiterated many times, they will collectively take the knee ahead of the fixtures during the tournament. They are doing this as a mechanism of peacefully protesting against discrimination, injustice and inequality. This is personally important to the players and the values the team collectively represents.
“This gesture of unity and fighting against inequality can be traced back as far as the 18th century. It is not new, and English football has made it very clear that it does not view this as being aligned to a political organisation or ideology. There can be no doubt as to why the players are taking the knee and what it represents in a footballing context.
“We encourage those that oppose this action to reflect on the message you are sending the players you are supporting.
“Please respect their wishes and remember that we should be all united in the fight to tackle discrimination. Together.
“They will do their best for you. Please do your best for them.”
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