Bundesliga Shows Outpouring Of Support For Black Lives Matter Protests Across The League

Bundesliga players and clubs are letting the world know they stand with George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement.

The biggest soccer league currently in action amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, the Bundesliga has seen a number of statements in support of the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests in the United States, perhaps none more prominent than what happened before Borussia Dortmund hosted Hertha Berlin on Saturday. The teams took a knee in a dramatic show of solidarity on the 12th day of protests over the murder of Floyd. 

Dortmund won the match 1-0 on a goal from Emre Can, but the lasting image will be that of the players and coaches deciding upon themselves to stand up against racism. While Europeans may not experience the same systemic white supremacy and violence from police as Americans do, they have clearly sympathized with the thousands of protesters in hundreds of U.S. cities as racism in 2020 transcends borders.

Weston McKennie, Marcus Thuram, Jadon Sancho and others made powerful statements in solidarity with George Floyd and Black Lives Matter last week. In response, the German Football Association (DFB) ruled earlier this week that players would be allowed to show their support for protests over the death of Floyd without fear of punishment. Additionally, FIFA asked refs to use “common sense” when it comes to players showing support for the protests over Floyd’s death. FIFA bans political messages, but these are protests for social, civil and human rights, which FIFA allows.

The stances of the DFB and FIFA opened the floodgates for this weekend’s matches.

Before Bayern Munich defeated Bayer Leverkusen 4-2, the defending champs wore warm-up shirts with the words Rot Gegen Rassismus (Reds Against Racism)and #BlackLivesMatter.

Bayern players also wore Black Lives Matter armbands during the match.

In Mainz’s 2-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt, Pierre Kunde, a Cameroonian international, took a knee after scoring.

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Like Bayern, Borussia Dortmund players wore warm-up shirts with messages of support for Floyd.

Those warm-ups were complemented by the teams taking a knee before kickoff. 

If Saturday’s actions were anything to go by, when LaLiga, Premier League and sports leagues in the U.S. finally return to action, expect similar shows of support, if not even more dramatic. 

Hopefully those in power are watching and listening.

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