Tv & Show

Which teams are taking the knee at Euro 2020?


EURO 2020 is on its way and one new feature of the tournament looks set to be the differing stance teams will take against racism.

England have become embroiled in a big row with the players condemning fans who booed them taking the knee against Austria and Romania.

PA

England will continue taking the knee throughout Euro 2020[/caption]

And manager Gareth Southgate said the players are even more determined to take the knee following the booing.

Here’s what all 24 teams will be doing during the tournament.

Which teams are taking the knee at Euro 2020?

England

England will continue to take the knee during Euro 2020, as they have been since the murder of George Floyd last year.

The team have stated that they believe the gesture is not a political one and designed simply to show support for racial equality.

Gareth Southgate said: “I think we have got a situation where some people seem to think it is a political stand that they don’t agree with.

“That is not the reason the players are doing it. We are supporting each other.”

Wales

Reuters

Wales and France take the knee in a pre-Euro 2020 friendly[/caption]

Wales have taken the knee over the past year and will continue to do so.

Interim manager Rob Page said: “We had a meeting and we all think it’s still important to take the knee.

“That’s the message we’ve given out. We’re all in it together and there were no issues.”

Belgium

Belgium are the only non-British team to announce they will take the knee throughout Euro 2020.

Romelu Lukaku said of any negative reactions: “I don’t care. I fight for diversity.

“Not only for the black community, also for the women. Colour, sexuality, faith, it doesn’t matter. Everybody should be respected.”

Which teams will not take the knee at Euro 2020?

Hungary

Reuters

Hungary point to the Uefa Respect badge as Ireland take the knee[/caption]

The Hungarian FA are the first association to confirm they will not take the knee at Euro 2020.

In a statement they said they view the knee as a political gesture in defiance of Uefa and Fifa rules.

It read: “The basic values ​​of the sport are equal opportunities, respect for the teammate and the opponent.

“Football may have become the most popular sport in the world because it belongs to everyone.

“The Hungarian national team not only follows the international rules and norms in all cases, but also pays tribute to everyone – be it an opponent, a fan or anyone else.

“MLSZ has been fighting all forms of hatred for years as part of the ‘Hate is not a track’ campaign.

“The rules of UEFA and FIFA do not allow politicization on the pitch and in the stadium either, which the MLSZ not only accepts but also agrees with.

“The national team will not express its condemnation of any form of hatred by kneeling before the matches.”

During their warm-up game against Ireland, Hungary pointed to the Uefa Respect logo on the sleeves of their shirts while the Irish team took the knee and were booed by a sizeable portion of the 15,000 crowd.

Croatia

England’s first opponents at Euro 2020 do not intend to take the knee.

An official statement read: “CFF and the players are against any form of discrimination.

“But the FA provides the players with the right to choose, as the act itself isn’t a part of Croatian culture and heritage.

“The players chose not to kneel down before the Belgium game, but they’ve taken a respectful stance towards the gesture made by their Belgium colleagues.”

What are the other teams doing?

Italy

Serie A players took the knee last summer, however the national team did not take the knee in their most recent friendly against Czech Republic.

It is not known whether the Azzurri will remain standing, take the knee in all their games or only take the knee against Wales.

On the fence

Turkey

EPA

PSG and Istanbul Basaksehir take the knee[/caption]

Turkey have not taken the knee in their recent internationals.

However, club side Istanbul Basaksehir did kneel against PSG after alleging that their assistant manager Pierre Webo was racially abused by fourth official Sebastian Coltescu.

Coltescu was revealed to have told referee Ovidiu Hategan to book “the black one” when pointing to the Basaksehir bench.

Uefa adjudged Coltescu to have been guilty of “inappropriate behaviour” but not racism and suspended him until the end of the 2020/21 season.

On the fence

Switzerland

Switzerland have not taken the knee in their recent games and their stance for the Euros is not known.

On the fence

Denmark

Denmark took the knee against both England and Belgium last autumn.

Christian Eriksen said at the time: “We all support the fight against all forms of racism.”

They have also joined other national teams in supporting political causes such as the ‘Football supports CHANGE’ initiative, condemning World Cup 2022 hosts Qatar’s treatment of migrant workers.

Their stance on the gesture in the Euros is unknown.

Lean yes

Finland

Finland took the knee before their Uefa Nations League game against Wales and were vocally supportive of the gesture.

Captain Tim Sparv said: “The whole team stood behind it. All the players and the backroom staff wanted to oppose racism.”

Their stance on performing the gesture at the Euros is unknown.

Lean yes

Russia

Russia have not made any public comment on taking the knee but their national team has never performed the gesture.

Russian side Krasnodar allowed their players to make their own decision on kneeling before their Champions League games against Chelsea.

In Russia, four players chose to kneel while at Stamford Bridge eight players decided to perform the gesture.

Lean no

Holland

The Dutch team have a number of players who have been vocal in their support of Black Lives Matter.

However, when they played Scotland and Georgia in their recent warm-up games, both teams chose not to kneel.

Holland have also been vocal in support of improved conditions for migrant workers in Qatar, alongside Norway, Denmark and Germany.

They have made no comment on taking the knee at Euro 2020.

On the fence

Austria

Austria chose to join England in taking the knee in their recent friendly in Middlesbrough.

It is not known whether they will do so in their Euro 2020 games.

On the fence


North Macedonia

North Macedonia have not declared any position on taking the knee.

Lean no

Ukraine

Ukraine have not announced a position on taking the knee.

Lean no

Scotland

Scotland stopped taking the knee in March with manager Steve Clarke suggesting the gesture had become diluted.

He stated: “Recent events and past events show that you have to keep changing people’s mindsets about racism.

“I think the knee when it was first proposed and first taken was a really powerful symbol.

“It’s maybe now become a little diluted, there’s been some high profile cases recently, which shows the racism and the abuse is still there. It’s not acceptable to anybody.

“And maybe just taking a stand as opposed to the knee will just waken everybody up to the fact that if we go to sleep it will never go away.

“We have to keep confronting it, pushing forward and making sure that in years to come racism of any form is not acceptable.”

However, after England players were booed for kneeling at the Riverside, Clarke left open the possibility of the gesture returning.

He said: “It’s a conversation I’ll have with the players before we play our first game.

“Then we’ll decide what way we’re going to do it throughout the Euros.

“Whether that’s to take a stand against racism or take a knee, we’ll decide as a squad and then we’ll carry it on throughout the tournament.”

On the fence

Czech Republic

Czech Republic refused to take the knee in their game against Wales in March and are highly unlikely to do so at Euro 2020.

The Czechs decided to point to the Uefa Respect logo in their sleeves on that occasion as a “neutral, apolitical gesture”.

The players will discuss the gesture again before the Euros.

However they are thought to be less likely than ever to take the knee after being angered by the ten-game suspension Uefa handed down to defender Ondrej Kudela after he was found to have racially abused Rangers’ Glen Kamara.

No chance

Spain

While some La Liga players have shown solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, the Spain team have never taken the knee and their clubs also tend not to.

Real Madrid did not take the knee against Chelsea, Liverpool or Manchester City while Villarreal chose not to kneel against Man Utd in the Europa League final.

When Granada played Man Utd, only Brazil winger Kenedy took the knee.

Spain have made no statement on taking the knee at Euro 2020.

Lean no

Sweden

Sweden have not taken the knee in their recent friendlies or made any statement on taking it during the tournament.

On the fence

Poland

Getty

Poland point to their Uefa Respect badge as England take the knee[/caption]

Poland are almost certain not to take the knee at Euro 2020 with the gesture being criticised by both their FA president and sections of their support.

The Poles refused to kneel against England and instead pointed to the Uefa Respect logo on their sleeves.

Polish FA President Zbigniew Boniek labelled the gesture “populism” that “achieved nothing” and said: “I am absolutely against such actions.

“Footballers sometimes kneel, and if you asked some of them why they were kneeling, they wouldn’t even know.”

No chance

Slovakia

Slovakia took the knee against Ireland and Scotland last October but were criticised in the Slovakian parliament.

After this, the country’s FA said the players had only taken the knee because they believed Uefa had instructed them to do so and would no longer perform the gesture.

Lean no

Portugal

Portugal have not taken the knee in their warm-up friendlies though many of their Europe-based players have done so in their domestic leagues.

They have made no statement on performing the gesture at the Euros.

On the fence

France

France took the knee in their first warm-up friendly against Wales but not in their second one against Bulgaria.

This would suggest that they will only take the knee during Euro 2020 if the opposition does.

They have made no statement on what they intend to do during the tournament.

On the fence

Germany

Bundesliga players took the knee after the murder of George Floyd last season.

However, the national team have not been kneeling in 2021.

The German team have been vocal in their support of human rights for migrant workers in Qatar.

On the fence



Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button