Croatia’s football federation (HNS) explained in a statement the reason why the national football team players opted not to go down on one knee and bow before last Sunday’s friendly match with Belgium, but instead stood still to demonstrate their respect for the Belgian footballers’ act of kneeling in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“The Croatian Football Federation and members of the national team always and everywhere condemn any form of discrimination. We also respect the right of each individual and organisation to choose their ways of the struggle against racism or struggle for other causes,” reads a statement.
The HNS said it respects the attitude of the national team’s players and will not impose any obligation on them to take the knee before the next matches as in Croatian culture and tradition, kneeling does not symbolise the struggle against racism or discrimination.
“It is very important that the actions of Croatian national footballers during their careers show that they respect each person, other co-players and rivals and that they do not make any distinction along social, racial, religious, ethnic or other lines, and those are the values also promoted by the HNS”, the statement reads. (Željko Trkanjec | EURACTIV.hr)