English player of Nigerian origin, Tammy Abraham says England is prepared to walk off the pitch if they are targeted by racist abuse in their Euro 2020 qualifiers this week.
“Harry Kane even said that if we’re not happy, if a player is not happy, we all come off the pitch together, if it happens to one of us, it happens to all of us,” Abraham said.
The three lions manager Gareth Southgate had earlier said that he would talk to the players before their next game and there has been a decision by the players that they will take matters into their own hands if necessary.
UEFA in June had ordered the partial closure of Bulgaria’s national stadium following racist behaviour by their fans in Euro 2020 qualifying games against the Czech Republic and Kosovo.
Also in August, Bulgarian club sides PFC Levski Sofia and PFC Lokomotiv Plovdiv were punished by UEFA for racism during Europa League games.
UEFA’s three-step protocol for racial abuse ends with the officials abandoning a match if announcements inside a stadium do not stop the problem.
“Harry Kane did ask the question about instead of going through the three steps, if we decide that we want to stop the game no matter what the score is if we’re not happy with it, as a team we’ll decide whether or not to stay on the pitch”, he said.
England faces the Czech Republic on Friday then play Bulgaria on Monday in a partially-closed stadium because of fans’ racist behaviour earlier in June.