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U.S. women’s soccer team wear ‘Black Lives Matter’ anthem jackets at friendly match


The U.S. women’s national soccer team (USWNT) wore “Black Lives Matter” anthem jackets Friday at a friendly match against the Netherlands.

Ahead of the game, team members published a statement that said, “We wear Black Lives Matter to affirm human decency,” adding their message was a protest against racial injustice and police brutality.

“We love our country, and it is a true honor to represent America,” USWNT forward Alex Morgan posted on Twitter Friday. “It is also our duty to demand that the liberties and freedoms that our country was founded on extend to everyone.”

The official USWNT Twitter account also posted a video highlighting the creation of the team’s special Black Lives Matter-themed jackets, underscoring, “This is not political, it’s a statement on human rights.”

Before the game, which was a rematch of last year’s Women’s World Cup Final, multiple USWNT team members took a knee during the national anthem, CNN reported.

The U.S. Soccer Federation only recently lifted a ban disallowing players to participate in solidarity protests, following mass protests this summer over the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, all Black Americans.

The ban was imposed after Megan Rapinoe took a knee during the national anthem in 2016, making her one of the first to kneel in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick’s police brutality protests.

Since this summer, more teams and leagues have supported players’ rights to kneel or demonstrate during matches, such as the NBA and WNBA, allowing players to wear activist messages on their jerseys.

Earlier this year, the USWNT spoke out on the issue of equal gender pay after U.S. Soccer claimed it wouldn’t pay the women’s teams equally, citing that being a male player requires more skill and responsibility.

As a protest to the league’s statement, the USWNT wore their warm-up jerseys inside out, hiding the U.S. Soccer crest.

Tags alex morgan Anti-black racism in the United States Anti-racism Black Lives Matter Megan Rapinoe United States women's national soccer team

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