The whole US crew, clad of their warmup jackets with the phrases “Black Lives Matter” on the entrance, stood for the nationwide anthem forward of their SheBelieves Cup sport on Sunday after some had knelt within the match opener final Thursday.
US defender Crystal Dunn mentioned no vote was taken to cease the kneeling gesture however relatively it was a collective choice by a crew prepared to maneuver previous the protesting part.
“I believe those who have been collectively kneeling felt like we have been kneeling to result in consideration to police brutality and systemic racism,” mentioned Dunn.
“We determined that transferring ahead we not really feel the necessity to kneel as a result of we’re doing the work behind the scenes. We’re combating systemic racism.
“We by no means felt we have been going to kneel eternally, so there was all the time going to be a time that we felt it was time to face.”
The act of kneeling through the nationwide anthem had all however disappeared from sport, however returned final yr after George Floyd died in Minneapolis final Could when a white police officer knelt on his neck for almost 9 minutes. His loss of life sparked protests throughout the US over police brutality.
Final June, US Soccer’s board of administrators voted to repeal a coverage that required gamers to face for the nationwide anthem, a rule put in place after Megan Rapinoe kneeled in assist of Colin Kaepernick, who popularized the gesture whereas enjoying for the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers.
Dunn, who’s one in every of seven Black or biracial gamers on the U.S. crew’s present 23-player roster, mentioned she felt the squad are ready to face transferring ahead given their efforts off the sphere to fight systemic racism.
“Although we’re selecting to face, it doesn’t suggest that the conversations go away, or they cease,” mentioned Dunn.
“It is all to say that we at the moment are, I believe, prepared to maneuver previous the protesting part and really transfer into placing the entire discuss into precise work.”
The US beat Canada and Brazil of their first two video games of the SheBelieves Cup and finis the four-team round-robin match on Wednesday with a conflict towards winless Argentina.