Football 'should do more' in fight against racism, says Porto captain Danilo Pereira

By Sports Desk July 23, 2020

Football must not let its powerful opposition to racism fade into the background, Porto captain Danilo Pereira has warned.

The death of George Floyd in police custody in the United States in May sparked an increase in action by campaigners against police brutality and racial injustice, along with growing support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

It has led to sports including football stepping up efforts to banish discrimination, with prominent action being taken in England's Premier League where the gesture of taking a knee has preceded every match since lockdown ended.

There have been examples of players kneeling in other European leagues, too, following the lead set by NFL star Colin Kaepernick, whose protests during the US national anthem in the 2016 season were criticised by President Donald Trump.

Danilo, who has been linked with a possible move to Arsenal, told Stats Perform News: "I think we should be doing more because sometimes people forget about these things, like, four or five weeks later they forget about this.

"So I think we should do more, because as players we have a lot of influence in other people.

"When we do something big, other people follow us so we could do something more.

"This is a really difficult issue to speak about because some people don't understand what we are talking about, because they think we are only talking about black people.

"But this is not only about black people, it's about every other race in the world, so I think we should do more and also other people should do more."

There is a school of thought that footballers should leave the pitch when racism occurs, with UEFA's three-step protocol designed to tackle the issue.

Danilo, who led Porto to the 2020 Primeira Liga title, says players would be better carrying on amid abuse, suggesting stopping games as a reaction is letting the racists win.

"I think the best way is to continue to play and to score goals," Danilo said. "If you score and if you win the game they will be mad, so this is the best way. But I understand the people who leave the pitch, who have a different reaction – sometimes to shoot the ball into the crowd.

"I think when they shout [at] you they want this reaction from you, to leave the pitch, to be mad. So, for me, if you do that, the people who do that get the reaction they want."

Related items

  • Jamaica, Costa Rica drawn in Gold Cup group C Jamaica, Costa Rica drawn in Gold Cup group C

    Jamaica’s Reggae Boyz have been drawn in Group C of the CONCACAF Gold Cup where they will face Costa Rica, Suriname, and the winner of preliminary round 8.

    The Group Stage of the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup will kick off on July 10, 2021. The 12 Concacaf national teams, which qualified directly through their performances in the Concacaf Nations League group stage, the guest participant, AFC Asian Cup Champions Qatar, and the three Prelims winners have been divided into four groups.

    Group A will feature Mexico, El Salvador, Curacao, and the winner of preliminary 9.  Group B will consist of the USA, Canada, Martinique, and the winner of preliminary 7.  In Group D Honduras, Panama, Grenada, and Qatar will compete to advance.

    The competition will begin on July 2, 2021, with the Preliminary Round, which will include12 Concacaf Member Associations competing for the final three spots in the 16-team Group Stage. For the two-round Prelims, the participating national teams have been divided into six matchups.  The games are listed below. 

    Round One

    Matchup #1: Haiti vs St. Vincent and the Grenadines

    Matchup #2: Guatemala vs Guyana

    Matchup #3: Trinidad and Tobago vs Monserrat

    Matchup #4: Cuba vs French Guiana

    Matchup #5: Guadeloupe vs the Bahamas

    Matchup #6: Bermuda vs Barbados

    Round Two

    Matchup #7: Winner Matchup #1 vs Winner Matchup #6

    Matchup #8: Winner Matchup #2 vs Winner Matchup #5

    Matchup #9: Winner Matchup #3 vs Winner Matchup #4

  • BREAKING NEWS: Liverpool midfielder Thiago tests positive for COVID-19 BREAKING NEWS: Liverpool midfielder Thiago tests positive for COVID-19

    Liverpool midfielder Thiago Alcantara has tested positive for coronavirus, the Premier League club announced on Tuesday.

  • Zidane blasts Hazard critics as star nears Real Madrid return Zidane blasts Hazard critics as star nears Real Madrid return

    Eden Hazard is "very close" to a return to full fitness as Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane refuted suggestions the forward lacked professionalism. 

    The Belgium star has struggled to find his rhythm in Spain following his initial €100million switch from Chelsea in June last year.

    He managed a solitary goal in his debut season at the Santiago Bernabeu as he battled to regain top condition after undergoing surgery on a broken right foot.

    Zidane hinted that Hazard is primed for action for the first time this season, though stopped short of confirming his spot in the team for Wednesday's clash with Real Valladolid.

    "I think he's very close to a return," said Zidane. "He is prepared and training well with the team.

    "The issue is that he hasn't been able to train much until now, but now he is back training regularly. So, we'll see what happens.

    "What he wants is to play. He had a big problem that caused him issues for a long time, but now it seems like he is fine.

    "The season is very long and he is a professional. He does not lack professionalism. What he wants is to be with his team-mates and to play."

    Asked if he was looking to add to his squad in what remains of the transfer window, Zidane pointed out the difficulties he already faces in picking the LaLiga champions' strongest XI.

    Vinicius Junior is one player who is having to contend with being on the periphery, although Zidane insists he is content with the winger.

    "I'm very happy with the squad that I have," he said. "Adding more players would not be ideal.

    "I'm already struggling to choose between the players that I have. I have the best squad.

    "I'm very happy with Vinicius. He wants to play like every player, I pick my starting line-up every match, and of course I count on Vinicius, he is a great player."

    Zidane's side responded to their opening-game draw with Real Sociedad by winning 3-2 at Real Betis last time out. 

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.