Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha became the first player not to take the knee, before his side’s win against West Brom in the Premier League.
Last month, the Ivory Coast international described having to perform the gesture as ‘degrading.’ Zaha in the past has spoken of the racist abuse he has been sent on social media.
Zaha had made comments about not wanting to take part in the routine pre-match activity - brought in by the Premier League in response to the Black Lives Matter movement after the coronavirus break - unless he thought it would bring change.
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West Bromwich Albion's hopes of getting out of the relegation zone took a blow on Saturday when they lost 1-0 to Crystal Palace after a first-half penalty by Luka Milivojevic.
The Palace captain found the bottom right corner from the spot in the 37th minute after West Brom defender Darnell Furlong was booked for a handball inside the penalty area following a VAR check.
West Brom created several chances, with midfielders Conor Gallagher and Matheus Pereira coming close to scoring, but they were unable to find the net.
The win lifted Palace two places to 11th on 37 points after 29 games, while second-bottom West Brom remain eight adrift of the safety zone on 18 points with nine games left to play.
Before the game he released a statement, saying: "My decision to stand at kick-off has been public knowledge for a couple of weeks now.
"There is no right or wrong decision, but for me personally I feel kneeling has just become a part of the pre-match routine and at the moment it doesn’t matter whether we kneel or stand, some of us still continue to receive abuse.
"I also fully respect my team-mates and players at other clubs who continue to take the knee.
"As a society, I feel we should be encouraging better education in schools, and social media companies should be taking stronger action against people who abuse others online - not just footballers.”
In an appearance on the
, Zaha explained his reasoning.
"The whole kneeling down - why must I kneel down for you to show that we matter?" Zaha said.
'It is degrading' - Palace's Zaha to stop taking knee before Premier League games
"Why must I even wear Black Lives Matter on the back of my top to show you that we matter? This is all degrading stuff.
"When people constantly want to get me to do Black Lives Matter talks and racial talks and I'm like, I'm not doing it just so you can put 'Zaha spoke for us'. Like a tick box, basically.
"I'm not doing any more, because unless things change, I'm not coming to chat to you just for the sake of it, like all the interviews I've done.
"All these platforms - you see what's happening, you see people making fake accounts to abuse black people constantly, but you don't change it.
"So don't tell me to come and chat about stuff that's not going to change. Change it.
"All that stuff that you lot are doing, all these charades mean nothing."
Palace manager Roy Hodgson said the Ivory Coast international made a "strong statement" with his gesture.
"He doesn't think the things we are doing are having the same impact as they were at the beginning," Hodgson said. "If anyone doubts Wilfried's commitment to the cause of anti-racism then I can assure them they have no reason to do so."
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