Euro 2020 Reignites the Talk About 'Football Racism' in the UK

Published July 13th, 2021 - 06:28 GMT
Marcus Rashford
The UK lost its first final Euro 2020 game to Italy on Sunday evening. (Frank Augstein / POOL / AFP)

Hours after England lost its first bid to win a Euro final game to Italy on Sunday evening, online platforms witnessed a racist sentiment against the English team's three players of African origins, who had missed penalty shootouts by the end of the game.

Even though the English team has achieved a historic first playing at a UEFA EURO final match, the team's failure to win the Euro 2020 cup has stirred angry reactions amongst some English commentators, many of whom blamed the three black players for the loss, using offensive racial slurs.

In response, the UK press and activists weighed heavily on the racist remarks, condeming the attacks against the three African-English players. 

Some online people referred to racist tweets saying that English racists only seem to refer to black players' origins when the team loses games, but celebrate them as heroes when they score wins.

This has also sparked international sympathy with Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford, and Jadon Sancho, addressing racism in the UK and hoping that such incidents come to an end.

Moreover, some social media users noted that negative coverage of black celebrities' news in the UK for decades has paved the way for such practices in the football world, highlighting attacks reported by the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle.

Commenting on whether or not English political leaders can help balance things out and help to stop attacks against black English people, English football coach Gary Neville highlighted that the UK's Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has condemned attacks on the three black footballers this week, has already made racist remarks against Muslim women prior to heading the UK's government, suggesting that "a racist leader will not help to address or to fix racism."

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