The English players took the knee to qualify for the World Cup on Thursday against San Marino and will do so for the next two games.
The starting XI stood in the center circle and watched a period of applause in honor of several former footballers who died in 2021 – Glenn Roeder, Frank Worthington, Colin Bell and Peter Swan – and then knelt briefly before the game began.
Manager Gareth Southgate confirmed at his pre-match press conference that the detachment’s leadership group will hold talks on whether to continue the protests that took place regularly before the games as part of the anti-racism initiative.
Just before the game, Southgate said: “Let’s take a knee. I think we are unanimous about bigger problems. We are a solid team and we are aware that there is a perception that maybe the impact is weakening a bit, but we don’t see a better way to spread the problem and we think it’s important to see their national football team united. “
Several club sides have abandoned the pre-match knee-jerk gesture as a sign of unity against racism, which has existed since the return of football under Project Restart.
Aston Villa defender Tyrone Mings believes taking the knee still sends a strong message, but Crystal Palace winger Wilfred Zaha has stopped doing so, feeling it is “humiliating”.
The Scottish men’s national team has said it will show solidarity with the fight against racism ahead of this year’s World Cup qualifiers, while Wales players took a knee before losing to Belgium on Wednesday night.
Scottish boss Steve Clarke says his team decided to stop taking the knee because the “powerful symbol” has been diluted.
Clarke said: “Recent events and past events show that you have to constantly change people’s thinking about racism.
“I think the knee when it was first proposed and first taken was a really powerful symbol.
“Maybe it’s gotten a little diluted now, there have been a few high-profile cases recently, which shows racism and abuse still exists. It’s not acceptable to anyone.”
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