Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton attended a 'Black Lives Matter' protest at Hyde Park in London on Sunday.

Hamilton has been vocal in the fight against racism after George Floyd – an African-American man – died while in police custody in the United States on May 25.

There have been widespread anti-racism protests in the USA and across the world since Floyd's death after a police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

Mercedes star Hamilton took part in a peaceful protest in his native England, with the coronavirus-hit 2020 F1 season not scheduled to start until July.

"Went down to Hyde Park today for the peaceful protest and I was so proud to see in person so many people of all races and backgrounds supporting this movement," the six-time F1 champion wrote via social media.

"I was proud to be out there acknowledging and supporting the Black Lives Matter movement, and my black heritage. I was so happy to see people of all ages, sporting Black Lives Matter signs and saying it just as passionately as I was.

"I was also happy to see so many white supporters out there today in the name of equality for all. It was really moving. I'm feeling extremely positive that change will come, but we cannot stop now. Keep pushing. #blacklivesmatter."

Donovan Bailey, the 1996 Olympic champion and former 100-metre world record holder, believes Canada has to confront its own issues of racism.

Coco Gauff delivered a call for action at a Black Lives Matter rally in Florida as the 16-year-old American tennis rising star said: "I demand change now."

In a powerful speech, Gauff told a crowd outside Delray Beach City Hall to engage in "tough conversations" and "use your voice", stressing racism was a problem that involved everyone.

The death last week of African-American man George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis, Minnesota, has sparked protests across the United States and beyond.

Gauff has called on her social media followers to campaign for justice to be served in that case, and in her speech she repeated a message she shared earlier in the week: that "being silent is choosing the side of the oppressor".

Protests have centred on police brutality towards the black community.

Gauff said it was "sad" she was having to deliver a message on injustices her grandmother fought against half a century ago.

The teenager is a major rising star in her sport. She reached the fourth round of Wimbledon last July as a 15-year-old and won her first WTA singles title in Linz, Austria, in October. She is ranked 52nd in the world and is expected to be a future top-10 star.

Billie Jean King, who led the fight for gender equality in tennis, praised Gauff's stance by tweeting: "Thank you, @CocoGauff, for using your platform to speak to both the young and the not so young about injustice. We stand with you and the entire black community."

This is the full text of the speech Gauff gave in Delray Beach:

"Hi everyone. My name is Coco and I just spoke with my grandma and I think it's sad that I'm here protesting the same thing that she did 50-plus years ago.

“I'm here to tell you we must first love each other, no matter what. We must have the tough conversations with friends. I have spent all week having tough conversations and trying to educate my non-black friends on how they can help the movement.

"Second, we need to take action. Yes, we're all out here protesting and I am not of the age to vote - but it is in your hands to vote for my future, for my brothers' future and for your future, so that is one way to make change.

"Third, you need to use your voice: no matter how big or small your platform is, you need to use your voice.

"I saw a Dr [Martin Luther] King quote that said the silence of the good people is worse than the brutality of the bad people. So you need to not be silent, because if you are choosing silence, you are choosing the side of the oppressor.

"I've heard many things in the last week and one of the things I've heard is, 'It's not my problem'. This is why I have to tell you this: if you listen to black music, if you like black culture, if you have black friends, then this is your fight, too.

"It's not your job, it's not your duty, to open your mouth to say Lil Uzi Vert is my favourite artist but I don't care what happened to George Floyd? Now how does that make sense?

"So I demand change now. And it's sad that it takes another black man's life to be lost for all of this to happen, but we have to understand that this has been going on for years. This is not just about George Floyd. This is about Trayvon Martin. This is about Eric Garner. This is about Breonna Taylor.

"This is about stuff that's been happening. I was eight years old when Trayvon Martin was killed. So why am I here at 16 still demanding change?

"And it breaks my heart because I'm fighting for the future for my brothers. I'm fighting for the future for my future kids. I'm fighting for the future for my future grandchildren. So, we must change now, and I promise to always use my platform to spread vital information, spread awareness and fight racism.

"Black lives have always mattered, they mattered then, they matter now, and they will matter in the future. Thank you."

Jadon Sancho and the other Bundesliga stars who displayed anti-racism gestures and messages in support of the late George Floyd will not face punishment, the German Football Association (DFB) has announced.

Floyd, a black American, died in police custody in Minneapolis last week, prompting demonstrations and riots across the United States and beyond.

Sancho and Borussia Dortmund team-mate Achraf Hakimi each revealed T-shirts bearing the message "Justice for George Floyd" in their victory over Paderborn on Sunday.

Borussia Monchengladbach's Marcus Thuram had earlier taken a knee after scoring in the win over Union Berlin, while Schalke's USA international Weston McKennie sported an armband referencing Floyd.

Such on-field statements or protests are prohibited and the DFB confirmed following the weekend's games it would be looking into the incidents.

However, FIFA subsequently asked leagues to "use common sense" regarding the matter, before president Gianni Infantino said the players deserved "applause, not punishment".

The DFB confirmed on Wednesday it would take no action for the "messages of anti-racism", while further demonstrations relating to racism and Floyd's death will also go unpunished.

Anton Nachreiner, chairman of the DFB's control body, said: "It goes without saying that the DFB's control body always has FIFA and DFB regulations in mind.

"In this specific case, however, these are deliberate actions of anti-racism by the players, who are thus campaigning for the very values which the DFB seeks to uphold.

"So no action will be taken now, nor in the case of further anti-racism demonstrations over coming weeks."

DFB president Fritz Keller added: "I welcome the far-sighted decision from the DFB's control body and am very pleased with it.

"The DFB is opposed to all forms of racism, discrimination and violence, and stands for tolerance, openness and diversity - all values that are also deeply engrained with the DFB statutes.

"That's why the players' actions have our respect and understanding."

Newcastle United defender DeAndre Yedlin has revealed he received a disheartening text message from his grandfather stating he would be worried for the full-back's life if he lived in the United States.

Protests and riots have erupted within cities across the country following the death of George Floyd, who died while in police custody after an officer knelt on his neck.

USA international Yedlin, who moved to England to join Spurs in 2015, says the systemic racism within his home country makes a mockery of the promise of "liberty and justice for all" - a phrase contained within the national Pledge of Allegiance.

Writing on Twitter, Yedlin said: "A couple days after George Floyd's death, my grandfather texted me and told me he's glad that I am not living in the U.S. right now because he would fear for my life as a young black man. As days have passed, this text from my grandfather has not been able to leave my mind.

"He was born in 1946, lived through the civil rights movement, lived through some terribly racist times in U.S. history, and now 70 years later he STILL fears for the life of his black grandchild, in the country he and his grandchild were born in, in the country his grandchild represents when he plays for the United States, in the country his grandchild represents when he's playing in England.

"I remember being in elementary school, and having to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, which ends "with liberty and justice for all". Every American needs to ask themselves, "Is there 'liberty and justice for all'" and if their answer is yes, then they are part of the problem.

"In no way are we asking black lives to matter more than white lives, all we're asking is we are seen as equal, as more than 3/5 of a man, as humans.

"My heart goes out in solidarity to George Floyd, his family, and all of the countless number of victims that have had their lives taken at the hands of meaningless police brutality."

Premier League stars including Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba have issued messages of support towards Black Lives Matter protestors in recent days, while clubs including Newcastle, Liverpool and Chelsea have taken a knee during training in a show of solidarity with the movement.

The FA has promised to adopt a "common-sense approach", as encouraged by FIFA, towards any players who make similar gestures during matches that might ordinarily breach the rules of the game.

FIFA's message to national associations came after the German Football Association (DFB) said it would investigate whether further action was required against players including Jadon Sancho, Achraf Hakimi and Marcus Thuram for their actions last weekend.

Borussia Dortmund duo Sancho and Hakimi revealed t-shirts with the words 'Justice for George Floyd' during their 6-1 win over Paderborn, while Thuram took a knee after scoring for Borussia Monchengladbach against Union Berlin.

The FA has promised to use a "common-sense approach" when dealing with players who show support towards movements such as Black Lives Matter during matches.

On Monday, FIFA issued a statement urging leagues around the world to exercise caution before punishing players for their behaviour amid the global outcry following the death of George Floyd.

The message from the governing body came after the German Football Association (DFB) said it would examine incidents from last weekend to see whether further sanctions against player protests were necessary.

Borussia Dortmund's Jadon Sancho was booked for celebrating a goal by revealing a t-shirt that said 'Justice for George Floyd', while Schalke's Weston McKennie wore an armband with the same slogan and Marcus Thuram took a knee after scoring for Borussia Monchengladbach.

The incidents came after news of Floyd, a black man who died after being knelt upon by a white police officer while in custody in Minneapolis, sparked widespread civil unrest in the United States.

Footballers in England including Paul Pogba and Marcus Rashford have issued anti-racism calls in recent days and teams such as Liverpool and Chelsea took a knee during training.

The FA has vowed it will not necessarily punish players for any on-pitch protests even if they are in breach of the rules of the game.

"The FA strongly condemns discrimination of any kind and has endeavoured to ensure that football in England is both diverse and inclusive in recent years," said English football's governing body.

"Where any behaviours or gestures on the pitch that may constitute a breach of the Laws of the Game have to be assessed, they would be reviewed on a case by case basis with a common-sense approach and understanding of their context.

"The power of football can break down barriers across communities and we remain deeply committed to removing all forms of discrimination from across the game we all love."

The Premier League, suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, is due to resume on June 17.

Former England striker Les Ferdinand has challenged social media giants to tackle racism on their platforms with the ruthlessness they have showed towards COVID-19 conspiracy theorists.

Arsenal great Ian Wright became the latest high-profile footballer to complain about being targeted for abuse, which has led to a police investigation in Ireland.

Now Ferdinand, who starred in the Premier League for QPR, Newcastle United and Tottenham, says racism from keyboard warriors will persist unless stringent steps are taken by tech giants.

He told Stats Perform: "One of the things I've been looking at, with all this COVID situation, I'm seeing things taken down off social media where people put an opinion about what they think COVID-19's all about, and that's been taken down off YouTube, that's been taken down off Facebook.

"All this sort of stuff has been taken down, but they allow racist abuse to float freely through their channels.

"Until these people decide to do something about it, this problem will remain."

Representatives of major English football authorities met with several social media companies last year in an effort to press the point about players being targeted online.

Wright complained of being abused on Instagram, while players including Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling, Watford striker Troy Deeney and Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha have faced vile remarks on a number of platforms, based around their skin colour.

The problem is widespread, and Ferdinand wants there to be greater accountability.

He said: "You can set up a social media account with it being [identifiable as] you and you can racially abuse people.

"Let's remember some years ago it was seen as part of parcel [of football] for people to go into a stadium and racially abuse people of a different background to them and it was accepted.

"People could do monkey chants and people could throw bananas on the pitch and then walk out at the end and that was it.

"This is another avenue. They can't do it in the stadiums too freely now because you've got CCTV cameras and we have people who may do something about in it in the stadiums.

"But from sitting behind a keyboard it's easy to throw out these things - and I continue to say racism isn't a problem in football, it's a problem in society."

Now director of football at QPR, Ferdinand played for the club from 1987 to 1995, a time when racism inside grounds was rifer than it is in the modern era.

He said: "Football has just been a medium in the past where people go and vent it without any repercussions.

"So those same people that were doing it back then - okay, generations have changed, but there's still racist people in society and they'll find a way to be racist, and this is the easiest way to do it without any identification going back to that person."

I’ve complained bitterly about the need for sports administrators to stop trying to get sports re-started as quickly as possible for fear that any such act, done too quickly, will lend itself to endangering the athletes and those they love.

I thought that administrators had been looking at it all wrong. In delaying decisions to postpone or cancel an event, they have forced athletes to continue training for that event. The fact that they must continue to train puts the athlete at risk of contracting COVID-19.

That line of argument went out the window when two French scientists promoted the idea that the testing ground for a new Coronavirus vaccine be Africa.

I was incensed.

But after the initial annoyance had worn off, I made a link between the restart of sport and the continued smashing of long-held, dangerous, perceptions.

Sport has been one of the foremost grounds for tackling injustice and inequality that this world has seen.

It is most often in the sporting arena where your background, your history, your political ideologies, count for the least.

Over many decades, sport has systematically attempted to become a place where the idea of a meritocracy is most real.

It isn’t real in life because the power has always been in the hands of a very few and they wield it with unerring indifference to anything that does not serve their purpose.

Over time, the athlete has come to the bargaining table by making it clear that without him or her, there is nothing. No fans, no money, nothing.

The latest arena where this battle has been fought is in that of gender equality, where women have stood up to say “hang on a minute, why am I not paid like the men, why is my contribution paid scant regard?”

And they have a point.

But even if they didn’t, the fact that without them, the entire thing collapses, means they have to be heard.

The same thing rings true of attempts to stamp racism from sport. The athlete, of whatever race, has wielded his power to say, “we will not play under unequal circumstances. We will not play when there is prejudice, in whatever form.”

Those realisations have led me to reconsider the idea that sports administrators shouldn’t be trying to restart sports as quickly as they are.

They should.

Sport is more than just a test of physical and mental superiority over an opponent. It is a litmus test for society. It shows society the direction it should be going in and to boot, it has the kind of unifying impact, seldom seen by any other endeavour.

For that reason, let’s get our ‘heroes’, for that is what the modern-day sportsperson has become, stand on the frontlines of a return to normalcy in the face of arguably, the most debilitating challenge faced by mankind in the 21st century.

Now the sportsperson must stand in the face of COVID-19 and say, “you have changed our world, but we’ll be damned if you stop us from trying to make it a better place.”

I remember reading or watching, I can’t remember which, ‘Fire in Babylon’, a depiction on the rise of West Indies cricket in the 1980s. More important to me than the details of how they did it and the massiveness of the achievement, relative to every sporting achievement ever had by a team, was the reason they did it.

The West Indians at the time wanted to show a couple of things. They wanted to prove they were every bit as good as their counterparts the world over, and they wanted to show the Caribbean how powerful it could be if they were unified. 

Those reasons made their achievements over the course of a decade and a bit, much bigger than sport.

Jackie Robinson becoming the first black Major League player was more than sport. His achievements in Major League Baseball had very little to do with the league or the sport, it was about destroying negative perceptions about the black man.

And so, I hope sport restarts quickly and tells these scientists willing to use a particular set of people as guinea pigs, where to shove it.

A 12-year-old boy has been charged and reported in relation to the alleged racist abuse of a Rangers player during the Old Firm derby in December.

The incident allegedly took place during Rangers' 2-1 victory over Premiership champions Celtic on December 29.

The boy cannot be named for legal reasons, Police Scotland confirmed on Monday.

Superintendent Mark Sutherland of Greater Glasgow Division said: "Abuse of any form is completely unacceptable and Police Scotland will continue to rigorously investigate any reports of abuse we receive and bring those responsible before the relevant authorities.

"We'd remind the public that, as the person charged is below the age of 18, he cannot be named or identified for legal reasons as per the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995."

Rangers claimed their first league win at Celtic Park since 2010 thanks to goals from Ryan Kent and Nikola Katic either side of an Odsonne Edouard equaliser.

Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos was sent off in second-half injury time after receiving a second yellow card for simulation.

LaLiga president Javier Tebas condemned an awful day for Spanish football after Inaki Williams reported racist abuse while Barcelona and Valencia fans clashed at Mestalla.

Athletic Bilbao striker Williams said he was racially abused by Espanyol supporters during their top-flight match on Saturday.

The forward passed on a complaint to Athletic captain Iker Muniain, who in turn spoke with referee Jose Maria Sanchez Martinez, while Williams appeared to clash with fans as he was substituted.

Elsewhere, supporters of Barca and Valencia were involved in violent confrontations ahead of a match the home side won 2-0, handing Blaugrana head coach Quique Setien his first defeat.

Tebas vowed LaLiga would investigate both incidents, posting on Twitter: "Today we have taken a step back in the work started years ago.

"The violent incidents of Barcelona and Valencia, the racist insults to Inaki Williams, they do a lot of damage to all of Spanish football.

"LaLiga takes responsibility. We will look with the clubs where the error is."

Williams posted a message on his official Twitter account, writing: "It is very sad that today we continue to see racism in football. We have to end it among EVERYONE. Thanks for your support."

Athletic Bilbao striker Inaki Williams has said he was racially abused by Espanyol supporters during Saturday's LaLiga encounter.

Raul de Tomas struck in the second half to cancel out Asier Villalibre's opener for Athletic in a 1-1 draw, however the match at RCDE Stadium in Barcelona was overshadowed by Williams' allegations of abuse.

The forward passed on a complaint to Athletic captain Iker Muniain, who in turn spoke with referee Jose Maria Sanchez Martinez.

Williams was substituted shortly after Espanyol's equaliser, but appeared to then become embroiled in a confrontation with some Espanyol supporters as he made his way off the pitch.

At full time, Williams told Athletic's club media he had been racially abused.

"I am sad for the draw and because I have suffered racist insults," he said. "It is something nobody wants to hear and that is totally out of place. 

"People have to come to enjoy, to help their team. It is a friendship, team sport and it has been a bit sad because these events should not happen. They are out of place."

Williams also posted a message on his official Twitter account, which read: "It is very sad that today we continue to see racism in football. We have to end it among EVERYONE. Thanks for your support."

Inter striker Romelu Lukaku does not intend to leave a response to racism in football to the authorities, citing players' protests in the Eredivisie as an example for Serie A stars.

A number of incidents of racist abuse in stadiums have marred Italian football in recent seasons, with Lukaku, Mario Balotelli and Miralem Pjanic among the targets.

Lukaku has repeatedly been outspoken on the issue, and the Belgium international is keen for players to lead a riposte to discrimination.

Eredivisie matches were paused for a minute in November in protest after Excelsior winger Ahmad Mendes Moreira was subjected to abuse at Den Bosch, giving Lukaku food for thought.

"For me, Italy is a beautiful country to live in," the former Manchester United man told Sky Sports.

"Italy has such a potential to be a great league like it used to, but we have to work together to keep those ignorant people out of the stadium.

"It happened in Holland as well, when I watched a game in the second division.

"I spoke to the guy that it happened to where they stopped the games for one minute, I spoke to the guy and said, 'You did well to walk off the pitch and to celebrate in front of those ignorant people'.

"I think we need to take things into our own hands. I don't think we should leave it to the federations.

"Holland did a great job, they did a fantastic job with all of their players. Sometimes in other countries we, as players, have to take matters into our own hands."

Italian police have handed a five-year ban from sports events to a supporter who racially abused Mario Balotelli in Brescia's match at Hellas Verona.

The fan has not been named, with Italian media describing him as a 38-year-old from the city of Agrigento.

Widespread reports in Italy said the police commissioner of Verona, Ivana Petricca, imposed the ban after an investigation into the events of November 3, when Balotelli reported hearing monkey chants.

Italy international Balotelli kicked the ball into the stands and threatened to walk off the pitch in the second half of his side's 2-1 defeat at Stadio Marcantonio Bentegodi, where he scored a late consolation goal for his team.

The abuse led to Serie A ordering a one-match partial stadium closure for Hellas Verona, while the club handed their head ultra an 11-year ban for defending the discriminatory chants.

Italian news agency ANSA said video footage and testimonies from those at the game led to the identification of the supporter, whose ban will apply to all sport events in Italy and within the European Union.

The man will be barred from parts of the city of Verona on football match days, ANSA said.

Lazio have avoided serious sanctions for racial abuse directed at Brescia's Mario Balotelli by their supporters after Lega Serie A confirmed the club have been handed a €20,000 fine.

Balotelli scored the opening goal in Sunday's encounter, before Lazio went on to claim a 2-1 victory thanks to Ciro Immobile's brace after Andrea Cistana had been sent off.

Shortly after Balotelli's goal, a warning was read out over the stadium's public address system after chants appeared to be targeting the Italy international.

Balotelli hit out at those responsible in an Instagram post that accompanied a clip of his goal, with the striker writing: "Lazio fans that were today [Sunday] at the stadium, SHAME ON YOU #saynotoracism."

The league agrees the chants were of a discriminatory nature and have issued a punishment, though Lazio avoided harsher sanctions due to their assistance in the investigation.

A Lega Serie A statement on Wednesday read: "Lazio was penalised an amount of €20,000 for having its supporters, in the 21st and 29th minutes of the first half, emitting a chant of racial discrimination against a player of the opposing team, in addition to an insulting chant against the same player in the 21st, 29th and 42nd minutes of the first half, which led the referee to interrupt the game to make the announcement aimed at the termination of the aforementioned discriminatory chant.

"The transmission of more detailed elements has also been arranged by the federal prosecutor, both with regards to the actual positioning (sector or sub sector)…of the supporters within which the leaders of this chant were placed, also regarding the active collaboration of Lazio in identifying the subjects involved in this discriminatory event, for the purpose of the possible adoption of further measures by this judge regarding the incident, and in any case also in relation to the evaluation of the possible recidivism."

This was not the first occasion Balotelli has been the target of abuse since returning to hometown club Brescia at the start of the season.

In November, the former Manchester City star kicked a ball into the stands and threatened to walk off the pitch after being subjected to monkey noises during a match against Hellas Verona.

Mario Balotelli has accused Lazio fans of racially abusing him during their club's win over Brescia in Serie A on Sunday.

Balotelli opened the scoring for Brescia but Ciro Immobile struck twice after Andrea Cistana's red card to turn it around for the visitors.

During the game, a warning was read out over the stadium's public address system after chants appeared to be aimed at Balotelli.

The Italy striker used social media after the match to hit out at Lazio supporters.

"[It] is a loss that hurt but we will come back stronger and we are on the right way!" He posted on Instagram with a clip of his goal.

"Lazio fans that were today at the stadium SHAME ON YOU! #saynotoracism."

It is not the first time former Milan and Manchester City striker Balotelli has been the target of abuse since he signed for hometown club Brescia at the start of this season.

Last November, Balotelli kicked a ball into the stands and threatened to walk off the pitch after being subjected to monkey noises during a Serie A match against Hellas Verona.

In the same month, there was a controversy involving Brescia president Massimo Cellino, who said Balotelli is "black and is working on lightening up, but he is facing troubles".

The word 'nero' in Italian means 'black' but can also be used for 'gloomy'. Brescia defended Cellino's comments as "a paradoxical joke, clearly misunderstood, released in an attempt to defuse excessive media exposure and with intent to protect the player himself".

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