England fans boo players for taking knee. Southgate says message is not understood

June 3 – England manager Gareth Southgate criticised England fans who disgracefully jeered players for taking a knee before Wednesday’s friendly against Austria.

Boos circulated around the stadium before kick-off but were drowned out by applause from other supporters.

“I was pleased it was drowned out by the majority of the crowd but we can’t deny it happened,” said Southgate.

A total of 7,000 supporters watched England live for the first time in 563 days but the narrow 1-0 European Championship warm-up win by Southgate’s team was partly overshadowed by the moronic booing from a minority as England players made the anti-racism gesture in front of a home crowd for the first time.

“It’s not something on behalf of our black players that I wanted to hear because it feels as though it is a criticism of them,” Southgate added.

“I think we have got a situation where some people think it’s a political stand that they don’t agree with – that’s not the reason the players are doing it, we are supporting each other.

“I think the most important thing for our players to know is that all their team-mates and all the staff are fully supportive.

“I think the majority of people understand it. I think some people aren’t quite understanding the message and I suppose we are seeing that across a number of football grounds at the moment.”

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