Premier League Players To Resume Taking Knee Before Games

The majority of Premier League players will return to taking a knee for this weekend's fixtures as part of their No Room For Racism campaign during Black History Month.

Following conversations between all 20 top-flight club captains, the league announced in August that the gesture would not continue for every matchday this season because there was a feeling across dressing rooms that it had lost its impact. It was first introduced following the murder of George Floyd in the United States in May 2020.

Instead a decision was taken to use it on select dates because by reserving its use for big matches they hope that it will carry greater resonance in the fight for equality.

Players took a knee before the opening round of fixtures and will now do the same for the No Room for Racism matches this weekend October, another round in March, the Boxing Day fixtures plus the final league matches of the season and the FA Cup and EFL Cup finals.

A statement released by the captains at the beginning of the season said as quoted by Sports Central: “We have decided to select significant moments to take the knee during the season to highlight our unity against all forms of racism and in so doing we continue to show solidarity for a common cause. "We remain resolutely committed to eradicate racial prejudice, and to bring about an inclusive society with respect and equal opportunities for all.

Bournemouth last season stopped taking the knee during their promotion campaign from the Championship but have confirmed that they will take part during the agreed upon dates this season.

Brentford stopped last season, too, after striker Ivan Toney remained standing because he felt like the gesture lost its impact. Other players to have previously stopped taking a knee included Crystal Palace ’s Wilfred Zaha and Chelsea defender Marcos Alonso.

The Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson told GQ magazine after Alonso had decided to stand last season: "Everybody's entitled to do what they will feel comfortable doing. "I know Marcos is against any form of racism, so we're all fighting for the same thing here and we all have the same message. But, for myself and the players at Liverpool, I think we are still in favour of it and that it is still having an impact.