UEFA Nations League: England Gamers Booed When Taking the Knee in Hungary

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England gamers had been jeered whereas taking the knee forward of a Nations League loss at Hungary the place the gang of 30,000 was primarily full of youngsters on Saturday.

The children had been allowed into the stadium regardless of Hungary being ordered to play the sport with out followers as a punishment for racially abusing opposing gamers and holding up anti-gay banners on the European Championship final yr. One grownup accompanies each 10 youngsters beneath the rules.

“How that aligns with the choice is obscure,” England coach Gareth Southgate mentioned after shedding 1-0 at Puskas Enviornment, their first loss to Hungary in six a long time.

“The ambiance once we arrived on the stadium, there have been children lining the streets, it was actually pleasant. They had been waving once we had been strolling out to heat up. I believed there have been form of pantomime boos when our workforce got here out to heat up.

“That was totally different with the taking of the knee however that felt like inherited pondering to me. We do it (taking the knee) to attempt to educate and I believe younger folks can solely be influenced by older folks.”

England gamers began taking a knee final yr as a part of calls to eradicate racial injustice in society following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Southgate did must enchantment final yr to England’s followers to not boo their very own gamers taking a knee. Now they’ve confronted the hostility from opposition followers.

“I do not know why folks would select to boo that gesture and fairly often younger folks can’t know why they’re doing it so that they’re being influenced by older adults — everybody is aware of what we consider and what we stand for,” Southgate mentioned. “What I might say is, I hear that also in our stadiums as properly. That’s why we do it and proceed to take that stand and we are going to preserve doing that as a workforce.”

Dominik Szoboszlai transformed a second-half penalty after being fouled by Reece James.

The final time Hungary beat England got here on the 1962 World Cup, with England having gone 15 matches unbeaten towards Hungary since then.

Excluding penalty shootouts, it was England’s first defeat in 23 matches.

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