Gary Neville doesn’t hold back as he absolutely rips into Boris Johnson live on Sky News talking about racism towards England players.
The former footballer turned pundit slammed the Prime Minister after some Three Lions stars were racially abused in the wake of Sunday night’s European Championship final, stating ‘it starts at the top’.
Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka all failed to score in the shootout defeat by Italy at Wembley Stadium.
Gary Neville on the money here, which is why certain statements coming out this morning are pointless. Don’t want to hear it pic.twitter.com/s9U8gnfxIW
— Richard Amofa (@RichardAmofa) July 12, 2021
After the final whistle, England’s superb performances at the tournament have been overshadowed by incidents of abuse that have been present on social media.
While Johnson issued a statement condemning the abuse, Neville believes he should take some responsibility, and what a speech he gave.
“I’m just reading the breaking news, it says the PM condemns racist abuse of England players. Southgate and the players a few weeks ago, five days on the trot, told us they were taking the knee to promote equality and it was against racism,” he told Sky News.
“The Prime Minister said it was ok for the population of this country to boo those players who were promoting equality and fighting against racism.
“It starts at the very top. So for me, I wasn’t surprised in the slightest this morning when I woke up to those headlines. I expected it the moment that the three players who missed, missed.
“The fact of the matter is, there is an issue within football and within society where we think it’s acceptable to criticise players for sporting actions because of the colour of their skin.
“It starts at the very top.”
Former footballer @GNev2 says has called on Boris Johnson to take a tougher stance on racism in football after some England players received abuse online following last night’s clash with Italy.#Euro2020: https://t.co/KUBv2VLGWI pic.twitter.com/VoJPtslaaP
— Sky News (@SkyNews) July 12, 2021
“Accepting and validating the players who take the knee, who are promoting equality and inclusion, it comes from the very top. If your parents do something, your children will follow.
“I’m not saying that each individual person who has directed that abuse shouldn’t take accountability, they absolutely should, but so should the social media companies.
“It’s a well-told story that the social media companies have to come down harder on racial abuse. We have to start to isolate these individuals who are attacking the players in a racist manner, isolate them by writing to their employers so that ultimately there is total accountability and something of consequence.
“But there needs to be accountability within the game, with the FA and the other organisations, UEFA and FIFA, so that we see punishments for these incidents that ultimately fit the crime because people abused, it’s absolutely ridiculous that in 2021 we are still talking about this.”
Fans reacted as Gary Neville rips into Boris Johnson live on Sky News…
@BetterBeNicer: I’ve just heard a nan on the radio say that Southgate made a woke decision to put 3 black players on to take penalties. I am gobsmacked at the stupidity. It clearly defines how toxic the culture wars are in Britain at present, it saddens me enormously.
@JonquilLucy: Well said @GNev2 👏👏 Are you listening @BorisJohnson?
@MrNatWilson: If Jack Grealish missed the losing penalty, the same fans would be throwing an arm around their poster boy and championing his efforts. This is because they are black, not because they missed a penalty. This racist attitude was green-lit by the government from Patel to Johnson.
@teamwimble: “Integrity, do the right thing, inclusion & equality”…..absolutely nailed it there @GNev2. Keep using your high profile to keep this in the public domain. I like to think the vast majority agree…. please let that be the case!
@greigewins1: Absolutely spot on and sadly true, the first thing I said to my boys after the pens was I hope these players don’t look at their social media as you just knew the racist abuse they were going to face. Society thinks it can get away with it because of a racist Government
@rednotgrey: Absolutely. Well said @GNev2. This does indeed start from the top @BorisJohnson @pritipatel and others in senior positions need to own this.
@PauleyS44: Gary has become such an incredible ambassador for the players and managers! Tragically, he’s right. Why were we surprised at the vile, racist abuse targeting 3 young @England players? @BorisJohnson @pritipatel gave the green light & should go!
@iverlean: Well said @GNev2 – we need to wake up to the lack of integrity at the top. Our black players are amazing ambassadors for all that is good in Sport and the country – please God they will overcome their disappointment and the abuse 😍⚽️😍
@GrumpyWench2: Absolutely brilliant, saw it earlier and we need much more of this.
@19xLFC: I wish I could watch news journalist ask these questions whenever @BorisJohnson or @pritipatel appear in front of their cameras or newspaper interviews. Well done Gary but we need more from the media!
@JamesRobertFoto: Long time coming tbf.
@stevelwpalmer: Have to agree totally. Footballers have taken a lot of criticism mostly over pay but I have to say that some have shown incredible leadership and levels of empathy and sympathy that our government have been left in the shade. In fact left in total darkness.
@Lynn_BenRoe1: All I have to say is WELL SAID @GNev2 we live in a country of intolerance of race and of disabilities
@RemainingKind: What an amazing man. If only our politicians had half his integrity and compassion
@SteveSelman8: Brilliant mr nevillie thank you on many levels
I could watch Gary Neville tear into Boris Johnson and his Government
— Marina Purkiss (@MarinaPurkiss) July 12, 2021