Raheem Sterling to hold 'ambassador' talks with Premier League to tackle racism in football

Plus: Megan Rapinoe calls for more white players to follow Sterling's lead to tackle racism

Sterling spoke to USA Women’s captain Megan Rapinoe on his YouTube channel
Sterling spoke to USA Women’s captain Megan Rapinoe on his YouTube channel

Raheem Sterling will hold talks with the Premier League about an ambassadorial role in a task force to tackle racism in football. 

The Manchester City forward has been hailed for his stance against discrimination after suffering racial abuse during a match at Stamford Bridge in 2018. He is set to lead a group of professionals to work with administrators on combating the problem.

538prom精品视频在线播放“Even after I said what I said, I’ve seen more players voicing their opinions and shedding light on the situation,” said Sterling, speaking to USA Women’s captain Megan Rapinoe on his YouTube channel. 

538prom精品视频在线播放“We have to all be together and it’s not really an individual thing to do, it’s something we have to do as a collective to get our voice heard and, since then, we’ve been pushing. I have a few more meetings with the league about an ambassador role so we’re gradually getting there.” 

538prom精品视频在线播放Sterling starred in the Premier League’s “No Room For Racism” campaign last year and his new role would see him consult on long-term strategy, along with looking at incidents as they occur. 

538prom精品视频在线播放During his discussion with Rapinoe, she insisted more white players needed to follow Sterling’s lead on tackling racism in football.

The England and Manchester City winger’s role as an advocate for black players and a vocal opponent of racism has previously been praised by Rapinoe, notably during her acceptance speech at the Fifa Best Awards last year.

Rapinoe accepts the award for the Best FIFA Women's Player of 2019 Credit: AFP

538prom精品视频在线播放“Hopefully other players, especially white players, will see that even just saying it, lending support, retweeting something you said or saying something of their own, they can just help so much,” Rapinoe said. “I think people feel overwhelmed, like I don’t know what to do to help, I’ve got to start a huge charity, but you really don’t; you can just say something in support.

538prom精品视频在线播放“We have millions of people that watch us, especially you guys in England that has the biggest, most popular league in the world. You have this huge platform and the littlest thing can make such a difference. For kids who want to be Raheem Sterling when they grow up, it’s not always the easiest road. It’s super brave you said that and you’re standing up for that. I hope other players do as well.”

Rapinoe made headlines in 2016 when she took a knee during the US national anthem, as one of the first athletes to support NFL player Colin Kaepernick’s protest against police brutality targeting black men.

538prom精品视频在线播放She told Sterling racism in football could be helped if white players refused to stand idle: “In Europe, every time I see one of those [racist incidents], I’m like if everyone was just as outraged as the players who are getting the abuse, or if the fans were just as outraged, then that would push out the bad actors because it’s not everyone, but it’s enough people where we should all be standing against that.”

Sterling agreed “collective” action was key before the pair touched upon the subject of England men’s and women’s teams’ World Cup semi-final appearances. Rapinoe noted the extra pressure on England teams to perform at major tournaments, and said the Lionesses would do better if they “relaxed”.

“I said this about the women’s national team a lot: if you all would just loosen up and relax, you’d probably win a lot more,” she said. “Everyone is so stressed, media is so stressed and the fans are stressed. Just relax, go out and just play. I feel like teams that have that self-expression, like you [Manchester City] have, Liverpool’s having that this year, the players that just play with freedom and be themselves, that’s the best.”

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