Chelsea will respect Marcos Alonso’s decision to stop taking the knee before games, says Thomas Tuchel… after the defender revealed he would be pointing at the No Room For Racism badge with the current ‘losing power’ gesture
- Marcos Alonso revealed he would no longer kneel for competitions
- The gesture was introduced for Project Restart as a strong stance against racism
- But Chelsea defender Alonso believes kneeling is now ‘losing a little strength’
- Thomas Tuchel accepts his decision and says every player is against racism
Thomas Tuchel has said Chelsea have accepted Marcos Alonso’s decision to stop taking the knee before games after explaining the gesture has lost its impact.
Full-back Alonso revealed he would instead choose to fight racism in a different way before the games, joining a handful of players who have also stopped kneeling.
And at his pre-match press conference, boss Tuchel explained that Alonso’s choice was respected and emphasized that his defender is firmly against discrimination.
Chelsea will respect Marcos Alonso’s decision to stop taking the knee, Thomas Tuchel has said
“It’s not a discussion in the group, but when a player makes such a decision, we are of course not in a bubble,” Tuchel said.
“The most important thing for me is that I know Marcos personally and have 1000 percent confidence that he is committed to fighting racism.
“There’s no doubt about it. We are all against it.
“Marcos has made his decision and it is a decision we accept. He gave his reasons and from here the discussion can end, or continue in a productive way to do more.”
Boss Tuchel confident Alonso is ‘1000 percent’ against racism and accepts defender’s choice
He then added: ‘Once you do a gesture, everyone does it, then it becomes normal. Maybe it lessens its effect. if this is [Marcos’] point, I see.
‘We can discuss. He is quite aware of it. He is experienced and responsible enough. Being against racism should be normal.
“I understand that Marcos thinks there is more to it, this is correct.
‘We have to use the platform and the possibilities we have together, perform together, by leading by example.’
Chelsea have mastered the games, along with other clubs, since Project Restart
Before the start of the new season, top players agreed to continue their stance that began last year during Project Restart.
Alonso, however, remains standing before the first whistle, with Wilfried Zaha and Ivan Toney also taking a different stance.
Crystal Palace talisman Zaha called the act “humiliating”, while Brentford striker Toney said players were being used “like puppets” when taking the knee.
“I am completely against racism and any form of discrimination,” Alonso said.
Wilfried Zaha and Ivan Toney Revealed They Wouldn’t Take the Knee Anymore
“I just prefer to put my finger on the decal where it says no to racism, like they do in other sports and football in other countries.
“Maybe it’s losing a bit of power the other way around, so I’d rather do it this way and show that I’m fully behind it.”
Alonso also believes none of his Chelsea team-mates have a problem with his decision, saying: “We haven’t talked about it. We are like a family.
‘I have a very good relationship with everyone. If I need to speak to anyone, I’ll say the same as I told you and I don’t think there will be any problems.’