Tyrone Mings is adamant over the fact that England will not stop kneeling down in support of the Black Lives Matter movement despite facing criticism from Britain’s Home Secretary.
England have been booed for taking the knee during their last three matches, including their 1-0 win over Croatia on Sunday. The gesture has been used by Premier League clubs in support of George Floyd who was murdered by a white police officer last year.
Britain’s Home Secretary Priti Patel recently said, “I just don’t support people participating in that type of gesture politics, to a certain extent.”
Asked if England fans were right to boo, she added: “That’s a choice for them, quite frankly.”
Gareth Southgate had made it clear before the Euros that his team will continue taking the knee during the tournament despite facing backlash from both the fans and the media. Aston Villa centre back Tyrone Mings, who started against Croatia on Sunday, said that no political pressure will stop them from taking the knee.
“Everybody is entitled to their opinion. The Home Secretary is one of many, many people that oppose us taking the knee or refuse to defend it,” Mings told reporters on Tuesday.
“We spoke and she once invited me onto a Zoom call and seemed so interested and engrossed in players’ point of view and what we could do to tackle these issues.
“We have our own set of beliefs and what we feel we can do to help as players that can be influential and stand up for what we believe in.”
In the two warm up games, the boos were quite audible but on Sunday, the 22,500-crowd ensured that the jeers would be drowned out by the larger section of the crowd which understand the meaning behind taking the knee.
Tyrone Mings was pleased by the positive reaction from a part of the crowd, but stressed on how important it was for the players to focus on more important things as the group stage enters the second round of games.
England will face Scotland on Friday before entertaining Czech Republic in their last match of the group stage.