Fed up Crystal Palace star makes hugely controversial comments regarding taking the knee

There’s no doubt that the need to eradicate racism from the game of football, and indeed from society generally, has to remain front and centre.

For every person that seeks to limit the relevance of any protests designed to shine a light on the problem, or tries to dilute its reach, there needs to be at least one other prepared to keep the conversation going.

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That said, one Premier League star is apparently fed up with taking the knee and has made controversial statements to that effect.

“The whole kneeling down – why must I kneel down for you to show that we matter?,” Wilfried Zaha said during the On the Judy podcast, cited by the Daily Mail.

“Why must I even wear Black Lives Matter on the back of my top to show you that we matter? This is all degrading stuff.

“When people constantly want to get me to do Black Lives Matter talks and racial talks and I’m like, I’m not doing it just so you can put “Zaha spoke for us”. Like a tick box, basically.

“I’m not doing any more, because unless things change. I’m not coming to chat to you just for the sake of it, like all the interviews I’ve done.

“All these platforms – you see what’s happening, you see people making fake accounts to abuse black people constantly, but you don’t change it.

“So don’t tell me to come and chat about stuff that’s not going to change. Change it. All that stuff that you lot are doing, all these charades mean nothing.”

When taken in context, perhaps Zaha has a point.

Black players have clearly had enough of people just paying lip service to the issue, throwing out supportive hashtags here and there or other self-serving propaganda.

He’s unlikely to be the last black football player to make such a stand either.

The time for talking is over. Actions speak louder than words.


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