Crystal Palace star Wilfried Zaha insists he will stop taking the knee before games because it is ‘degrading’ and has lost its meaning as he urges fellow black players to ‘stand tall now’
- Wilfried Zaha has insisted he intends to stop taking the knee before games
- The Crystal Palace star believes it is ‘degrading’ and isolating black players
- He also said he will not wear Black Lives Matter on his back as it feels like a target
- Zaha feels the gesture’s lost its meaning and that black players should ‘stand tall’
Wilfried Zaha has vowed to stop taking the knee before matches as he believes the gesture has lost its meaning.
The Crystal Palace forward, 28, believes taking the knee to show support for racial equality — as players, official and staff in the Premier League and EFL have done since Project Restart — is becoming ‘something we just do now’.
Several clubs, including Brentford last weekend, have stopped making the gesture.
Wilfried Zaha (right) has vowed to stop taking the knee before Premier League matches
Zaha, speaking at Thursday’s Financial Times’ Business of Football summit, said: ‘I’ve said before that I feel like taking the knee is degrading and stuff because growing up my parents just let me know that I should be proud to be black no matter what and I feel like we should just stand tall.
‘Trying to get the meaning behind it, it’s becoming something that we just do now and that’s not enough for me.
‘I’m not going to take the knee, I’m not going to wear Black Lives Matter on the back of my shirt because it feels like it’s a target. We’re trying to say that we’re equal but we’re isolating ourselves with these things that aren’t even working anyway, so that’s my stand on it.
Crystal Palace star said it is ‘degrading’ and black players are isolating themselves by doing it
‘I feel like we should stand tall. Now I don’t really tend to speak on racism and stuff like that because I’m not here just to tick boxes. Unless action is going to happen, don’t speak to me about it.’
Zaha spoke on the day Arsenal supremo Vinai Venkatesham branded racist abuse on social media ‘the biggest problem in football’ after striker Eddie Nketiah became the latest high-profile player to be targeted.
Nketiah was urged to leave Arsenal in a racist post replying to a training picture he posted on Twitter ahead of last night’s clash against Benfica.
Zaha’s comments came as Arsenal supremo Vinai Venkatesham (left) branded racism as football’s biggest problem after Eddie Nketiah (right) was targeted on social media