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12th Jul 2021

Gary Neville calls out hypocrisy of Boris Johnson after England players racially abused

Charlie Herbert

Nail on the head.

Gary Neville has called out the hypocrisy of Boris Johnson and others in government after England players received racist abuse following the Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy.

Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka all missed their penalties in the shoot out, resulting in England losing the game, and within minutes their social media accounts were flooded with racist abuse.

In the aftermath, the likes of Johnson have come out to condemn the abuse. However, Neville couldn’t ignore what seemed like rank hypocrisy from people who just weeks earlier had refused to condemn those who booed the players taking the knee before matches.

Speaking on Sky News, Neville said: “Well, I’m just reading your breaking news, it says ‘PM condemns racist abuse of England players.’

“Gareth Southgate and his players told us a few weeks ago – I think it was five days on the trot – that they were taking the knee to promote equality and it was against racism. The Prime Minister said that it was okay for the population of this country to boo those players, who were trying to promote equality and defend against racism. It starts at the very top.

“So for me, I wasn’t surprised in the slightest that I woke up this morning and saw those headlines. I expected it the minute that the three players that missed missed.

“The fact of the matter is there is an issue obviously in football, there is an issue in society, where we feel it is acceptable basically to criticise players for sporting actions because of the colour of their skin.”