Crystal Palace marksman Wilfried Zaha became the first Premier League player not to kneel before kick-off following their Saturday clash with West Brom.
Zaha has been one of the vocal players in voicing their concern about the kneeling claiming that it wasn’t making any big difference with the Ivory Coast international restoring to ‘standing tall’ before the clash.
In a statement ahead of kick-off, Zaha said: “My decision to stand at kick-off has been public knowledge for a couple of weeks now. There is no right or wrong decision, but for me personally, I feel kneeling has just become a part of the pre-match routine and at the moment it doesn’t matter whether we kneel or stand, some of us still continue to receive abuse.
“I know there is a lot of work being done behind the scenes at the Premier League and other authorities to make a change, and I fully respect that, and everyone involved. I also fully respect my teammates and players at other clubs who continue to take the knee.
“As a society, I feel we should be encouraging better education in schools, and social media companies should be taking stronger action against people who abuse others online-not just footballers. I now just want to focus on football and enjoy being back playing on the pitch.
“I will continue to stand tall.”
A big +3 to mark the first start back 🙏🏿 Enjoy your weekend everybody 🤟🏿 pic.twitter.com/xjDWxiZomz— Wilfried Zaha (@wilfriedzaha) March 13, 2021