Wilfried Zaha explains the decision to stand before kick-off



Crystal Palace striker Wilfried Zaha raised his eyebrows when he became the first Premier League player to fail a knee ahead of Saturday’s game against West Brom. Zaha explained that decision in a pre-game statement, saying he felt that kneeling had become “part of a pre-game routine” and did not stop the racial abuse.

Zaha’s full statement read:

“My decision to stand at kick-off has been public for a few weeks. There is no right or wrong decision, but for me personally kneeling is just part of the pre-game routine and at the moment it doesn’t matter if we kneel or stand, some of us are still being abused.

“I know there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes in the Premier League and other authorities to make changes and I fully respect that and everyone involved. I also respect my team-mates and players at other clubs who are still active. ” the knee.

“As a society I think we should promote better education, and social media companies should step up against people who abuse others online – not just soccer players.

“I just want to focus on football now and enjoy playing on the pitch again. I will continue to stand tall.”

Premier League players have dropped a knee before the games since George Floyd’s death last May.

Wilfried Zaha discussed frustration in February

Zaha said he was tired of kneeling during an interview on the On the Judy podcast in February. Zaha stated that according to the Daily Mail, he doesn’t have to kneel or wear “Black Lives Matter” on his jersey to show others that blacks matter.

“All that kneeling – why do I have to kneel down so you can show that we matter? Why do I even have to wear Black Lives Matter on the back of my shirt to show you we matter? This is all degrading stuff.

“When people are constantly trying to get me to have Black Lives Matter conversations and race talks, and I guess I’m not doing it just so you can let Zaha speak for us. Basically like a check mark.”

“I don’t do any more.”

Zaha added that kneeling and wearing “Black Lives Matter” on his jersey were just “charades” and not something that would actually make significant changes.

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