US President Donald Trump Sends Out Warning To US Soccer And NFL Over National Anthem U-Turn
Donald Trump has issued a clear threat that he will personally refuse to watch NFL matches or US Soccer sides if players refuse to stand for the national anthem.
The NFL made the decision last week to allow players to protest during the US anthem and added that it was "wrong for not listening" to them earlier.
And United States Soccer Federation on Thursday lifted the ban it placed on players kneeling during the anthem.
US President Trump, 74, took to Twitter and sent out tweets directed at US Soccer and the NFL after giving players the option to kneel for the anthem.
He wrote: "I won't be watching much anymore!
"And it looks like the NFL is heading in that direction also, but not with me watching!"
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Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick started the trend after famously kneeling during the anthem in 2016 to spotlight racial inequality in the US.
US superstar Megan Rapinoe, who won the women's 2019 Ballon d'Or, also took the knee to show her support for the former NFL star.
US Representative Matt Gaetz echoed Trump's sentiments and argued that he'd rather not have a football team if they "won't stand for the National Anthem [sic]."
The 38-year-old Republican congressman tweeted: "I'd rather the US not have a soccer team than have a soccer team that won't stand for the National Anthem [sic].
"You shouldn't get to play under our flag as our national team if you won't stand when it is raised."
NFL and US Soccer's U-turns have emerged in the wake of widespread protests after the tragic death of George Floyd.
Floyd, who was 46 when he passed away, was an African American man who died in police custody in Minneapolis after a white officer shockingly knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes.
Featured Image Credit: PA