Chelsea Players Latest To Join Protests by Kneeling At Training

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LONDON, ENGLAND - MARCH 14: General view outside Stamford Bridge stadium home of Chelsea. All Premier League matches are postponed until at least April 3rd due to the Coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic at Stamford Bridge on March 14, 2020 in London, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

Chelsea players, coaches, and staff kneeled down in the shape of the letter ‘H’ at training Tuesday, joining the growing list of worldwide protests over the death of American George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police last week.

Chelsea Players Latest To Join Protests by Kneeling At Training

Players Silently Speak Up

Captain Cesar Azpilicueta and a few others suggested the player-led initiative ahead of Tuesday’s training. “It is something where we want to use our position to express that we are living in a world where we have to try to improve it for the future, to be a better world with more love, without hate,” he explained via the club’s website.

He continued, “There is every day the possibility to lead by example, to behave, to educate the children into a better world because we know that education is key for the future.”

Why did the players kneel to form the letter ‘H’? “We are all equal and it doesn’t matter our origin, the colour of our skin, our religion, our sexuality, we are all human,” Azpilicueta said (our emphasis).

This followed the club’s social media declaration of support for George Floyd Monday. The club tweeted out saying it is “committed to being part of the solution.”

Several of the club’s players also participated in the social media “black out Tuesday.” Tammy Abraham, Fikayo Tomori, and Mason Mount, to name a few, posted all-black photos on their social media as part of the action.

World-Wide Reach

Liverpool‘s players kneeled at the centre circle at Anfield Monday. Manchester United‘s Paul Pogba took to Instagram and Marcus Rashford to Twitter to make their voices heard. And Tuesday, Newcastle United players also knelt in a circle at training.

And over the weekend in the Bundesliga, multiple players made silent statements as well. Schalke’s American midfielder Weston McKennie was the first, wearing an armband that read “Justice for George Floyd.”

Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho and Achraf Hakimi revealed shirts with the same message after scoring. And Borussia Monchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram took a knee after scoring as well.

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