KEY POINTS

  • Marcos Alonso thinks that kneeling is simply not enough to abolish racism
  • Wilfried Zaha of Crystal Palace also decided to stop kneeling for the exact same reasons
  • Chelsea boss is in full support of his left back's decision

Chelsea’s Marcos Alonso stressed that he has stopped taking a knee in support of ending racism, believing that the gesture is starting to lose its value.

The Spanish left-back took the knee last season but is yet to do so during the new English Premier League season.

“I just prefer to do it this way," Alonso said. 

"It's my way to do it. I think it's another way. And maybe I think it's losing a bit of strength the other way. So I just prefer to do it this way and to show I am fully supportive of fighting against racism.” 

Alonso also bared that he plans to make a new gesture, one that he hopes will be more direct in its message and will be more explicit.

“I am fully against racism and I'm against every type of discrimination. I just prefer to put my finger to the badge where it says: 'No to racism', like they do in some other sports and football in other countries,” said Alsonso.

“I prefer to do it this way and, of course, to say very clearly that I am against racism and I respect everybody.”

Alonso is not the only player who has decided to stop kneeling.

Crystal Palace forward Wilfried Zaha chose to stop the gesture in March of this year, believing that kneeling has become “degrading”.

Les Ferdinand, the director of football of the Queens’ Park Rangers, stated in September 2020 that there is a very big risk that kneeling becomes so much a part of the norm that it can just be a “a fancy hashtag or a nice pin badge." 

Alonso is yet to speak to his teammates about it, but he believes that they will support him the whole way.

Chelsea’s Reece James, Romelu Lukaku, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Antonio Rudiger are some of the players who have received racial abuse in the Premier League.

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel is also in full support of whatever Alonso decides to do.

“Isn't this always like this, that once you're doing a gesture then everybody's doing it and once you're doing it so often because there are so many games it becomes normal and then maybe it lowers the effect of it,” Tuchel said.

“If this is his point I can see his point... He is experienced enough and responsible enough. That's the way it is. This development started with single people taking the knee and became a bigger thing. I think Marcos' point is it cannot end like this and it cannot become normal," the coach added. 

“What should be normal [is] that we are against racism.”

Romelu Lukaku (L) scored his first Champions League goal for Chelsea Romelu Lukaku (L) scored his first Champions League goal for Chelsea Photo: AFP / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS