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Scottish Premiership players to get chance to take the knee ahead of new season

SPFL File Photo
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Scottish Premiership players will be given the chance to take the knee in opposition to racism just before their new season kicks off.

Players will also wear T-shirts promoting campaign group Show Racism the Red Card and a number of video messages from each of the 12 teams will be played to highlight the message.

Scottish Professional Football League chief executive Neil Doncaster said: “For many, many years, Scottish football has been enormously enhanced by players from hugely diverse backgrounds, who are amongst the most beloved and admired figures to have graced our game.

“It’s fitting therefore, that Scottish football plays a prominent role in helping ensure that education is at the heart of efforts to eradicate the scourge of racism in our society.

“That’s why we and PFA Scotland proudly support Scotland’s anti-racism charity, Show Racism the Red Card, which educates thousands of young people and adults annually and are committed to promoting their work throughout a Fortnight of Action in October, as well as in the opening round of Premiership fixtures.

“Players from all SPFL Premiership clubs have put together a video message which will be broadcast throughout match coverage and players will be issued with special t-shirts for the opening matches of the season, provided by PFA Scotland in conjunction with Show Racism the Red Card.

“Our three organisations have also worked together to enable players and officials who wish to show their solidarity with efforts to eliminate racial prejudice to do so prior to the opening matches of the season.

“Racism is abhorrent to any right-thinking person in our society today. The SPFL wholeheartedly supports the right of players, officials and others who wish to underline their opposition to such hateful beliefs and behaviours to ‘take a knee’ as we relaunch the game in Scotland.

“However, the manner in which people choose to express their opposition must remain a matter of individual free will and personal choice.

“It’s for that reason that it would be wholly inappropriate for the SPFL, or indeed any organisation, to compel anyone to make any specific gesture.

“As in other sports, individuals must be free to express their own views in other ways, and the SPFL respects their right to do so.”