Football League clubs set to hold talks over alternatives to taking the knee despite players being ‘overwhelmingly in support’ of continuing with the gesture
- Football League clubs set to hold talks over alternatives to taking the knee
- Players remain ‘overwhelmingly in support’ of continuing the pre-match ritual
- The EFL hit back at PFA’s claims that they have shown a lack of leadership
Football League clubs are expected to push ahead with talks to find alternatives to taking the knee despite players being ‘overwhelmingly in support’ of continuing the pre-match ritual.
The EFL have also hit back at the Professional Footballers Association’s claims they have shown a ‘lack of leadership’ in not making the gesture mandatory, arguing that doing so would undermine what should make the knee so powerful — the freedom of expression.
‘By definition it has to be an individual’s choice as to whether they wish to ‘take a knee’ before a match if it is to remain an effective stance,’ an EFL spokesman told The Mail on Sunday.
Football League clubs are set to hold discussions regarding alternatives to taking the knee
As revealed by this paper, the idea of finding an alternative to taking the knee was raised at the last meeting of Football League clubs in response to fans at some clubs, most notably at Millwall, Colchester United and Cambridge booed when their players performed the gesture.
It prompted the PFA to send a survey to its members asking if they still wished to take the knee before matches. Of the 400 responses it received, 80 per cent confirmed they wished to continue taking the knee as a show of support to the fight against racism and inequality.
‘The results were clear; players overwhelmingly support continuing this act of solidarity despite any adverse responses that may be received,’ said the PFA’s statement.
However players are ‘overwhelmingly in support’ of continuing the pre-match ritual
‘This powerful symbol of solidarity represents the players’ commitment to anti-racism and is not an endorsement of any political position.’
Taking the knee was adopted universally during Project Restart following the death of George Floyd in America to show a desire to tackle systemic racism across society. Yet only in the Premier League this season has it been observed across all clubs.
The PFA appeared to take a swipe at the EFL and its clubs for this, saying: ‘While the Premier League has already committed to teams taking the knee for the duration of the season, players across the EFL have been left in a difficult position following a lack of leadership on the issue.
‘The survey conducted by the PFA has shown overwhelming support for continuing to take a knee, and we hope this gives the EFL and the clubs involved the information needed to support the players.’
The EFL says it will ‘continue to respect and support…
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