Premier League players set to no longer take the knee before every game

The Premier League has confirmed that top-flight players in England will no longer take a knee before every game in the competition.

The anti-racism gesture, however, will be visible throughout the opening weekend of the 2022/23 season, which begins on Friday night, as well as ahead of specific other games.

The league issued the following statement:

“Premier League club captains have reaffirmed their commitment to combating racism and discrimination in all forms.”

“The players have decided to take the knee at specific points during the upcoming season to emphasize that racism has no place in football or society.” The Premier League supports the players’ decision and will use these opportunities, in collaboration with the clubs, to raise anti-racism messaging as part of the League’s No Room for Racism Action Plan.”

With the post-Covid resumption of action in June 2020, the now-familiar anti-racism gesture entered the football arena in this country, as players used their platform to highlight and support the movement for racial equality.

Since then, some players have chosen not to do so, with Wilf Zaha becoming the first Premier League player to do so in 2021.

“I’ve said before that I feel like kneeling is degrading and stuff because my parents just told me that I should be proud to be black no matter what and I feel like we should just stand tall,” he said at the time.

During this time, England’s national teams have also taken a knee before matches.

The club captains added to the Premier League’s statement, saying, “We have decided to select significant moments during the season to take the knee to highlight our unity against all forms of racism, and in doing so, we continue to show solidarity for a common cause.” We remain steadfast in our commitment to eradicating racial prejudice and creating an inclusive society with respect and equal opportunities for all.”

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