In the upcoming 2022/23 season, Premier League teams want to stop kneeling before every game.
The decision was made following a meeting of all 20 clubs, with some officials making an agreement that the expression had ‘lost its gravitas.’
Since the 2020/21 season, every Premier League team has shown its support for the Black Lives Matter movement by holding a pregame demonstration in which the players take a knee.
Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick pioneered the protest in 2016, and other big-name athletes such as Lewis Hamilton quickly followed suit following the death of George Floyd in the United States in 2020.
When it first began, the Premier League’s anti-racism gesture drew widespread praise from the sporting community.
However, as time has passed, more and more players, including Wilfried Zaha and Ivan Toney, have spoken out against it.
According to Mail Plus, some Premier League captains have agreed that kneeling before “selected” matches should be limited to “amid rising concerns that the gesture has lost its gravitas.”
The demonstration is thought to be reserved for televised matches as well as local derbies to ensure the most eyes are on it when possible.
However, while most clubs are still open to the idea, some are not.
According to the report, recently promoted Bournemouth will not take the knee because the players believe it has ‘run its course.’
Wilfried Zaha was one of the first Premier League players to speak out against the symbol.
“I feel like kneeling is degrading,” the Crystal Palace midfielder said at the FT Business of Football conference.
“Growing up, my parents always told me that I should be proud to be black, no matter what, and I believe we should stand tall.”
“I think the meaning behind it all is becoming something we just do now.” That is insufficient. “I’m not taking the knee.”
“We’re trying to say we’re equal,” he added, “but these things aren’t working.”
“Don’t ask me about it unless something has changed.” I don’t want to hear about it unless there is going to be action.