- On Wednesday (20:45), the Polish national team will play England at Wembley as part of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers.
- In the United Kingdom, in many sports, athletes kneel before matches begin to support the Black Lives Matter movement demanding equal rights for blacks. This gesture is among other Premier League players
- A few days ago, the San Marino team played against England at Wembley. Its players, like the English, chose to kneel. How will the Poles do? PZPN spokesperson Jakob Koyatkovsky explains the situation to us
- Refusal to kneel is often treated as a political declaration met with hate and rejection. Many athletes have experienced this. However, even kneeling on a kneel is not considered appropriate by everyone
- More of these stories can be found on the Onet.pl homepage
At Wembley, the Poles will find themselves in a difficult political situation. In fact, whatever they do, it will be considered a kind of advertisement. In the UK, there is strong support for the Black Lives Matter movement, which demands equal rights for blacks, and there is widespread support for it. They do this, among other things, Premier League players before every match. There are practically no exceptions here, and everyone kneels down in solidarity before the start whistle. Recently, Wilfred Zaha, the soccer player at Black Crystal Palace, refused to make this gesture, arguing that it was an empty stance, and that he and his friends suffered from racism while continuing to do so. This sparked a wide debate in Great Britain.
The rest of the text is below the video.
On March 25, San Marino arrived at Wembley, whose players kneel before the kick-off, in solidarity with the home side. Now the English will play their second home game as part of the World Cup qualifiers in Qatar. As we know, their competitor will be the Poles who, in this case, must take a position. There is no shortage of opinions on the internet that kneeling would be a “stigma”; Many accuse the BLM of hypocrisy and of using racism to fight for other goals. Many fans are even asking Paolo Souza’s players not to kneel. That, in turn, will definitely lead to debate in the UK, which puts us in a bad spot. And it would also be a kind of permit.
England and San Marino before the Elle match. World Cup 2022
– The decision on this issue has not been taken yet – says the Polish Football Association spokesman Jakob Koyatkowski. In the end, it will be decided by the players in the pre-match briefing. However, it seems to me that they will not decide to kneel, they are not convinced. The spokesman added that this gesture was offered to us in the past before the Netherlands match, and we did not decide that.
Zbigniew Bunyik, president of the association, also speaks in the same vein. In an interview with Sport.pl He declares that he is not a supporter of this kind of work. – Will they kneel? I do not know. So far, this topic has not appeared in the training camp. We’ll see how it looks. There were a lot of more important and more serious topics, so this is the last topic that interests us. (…) I am totally against such actions. This is pure populism, because there is nothing behind it. Soccer players sometimes kneel, and if you ask some of them why they kneel, they won’t even know – said Bunyk.
Right now, whites and reds face more serious problems. Our captain and best shooter – Robert Lewandowski – will be absent in London. Tuesday morning, Grzegorz Krychowiak and Kamil Piątkowski received positive results from coronavirus tests. The same thing happened with a spokesperson for the Polish Football Association, who admitted that he was lucky enough to feel good and that he had not shown any symptoms.
In the past, those who refused to kneel were often placed on a par with the racists. This was experienced by, among others, young F1 stars Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen, who were one of the few drivers who had not kneeled before the races. In order to drop the accusations of racism, they had to explain themselves in detail.