Blackpool players will continue to take a knee with full support of Neil Critchley

Blackpool’s players have Neil Critchley’s full support in continuing to take the knee this season to help combat racism.

Friday, 20th August 2021, 8:00 am

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While a handful of clubs have opted to stop taking part in the pre-match gesture, the Seasiders have decided to carry on.

It has been booed by some fans at Bloomfield Road, only to be drowned out by applause.

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Critchley told The Gazette: “Taking the knee is something, as a group, the players decided to do.

“That’s how we feel about it as a football club and I’m fully supportive of that.

“It’s been well received in our ground by our supporters and it’s something we need to continue to highlight. If the players want to do that, then I’m in total agreement with that.”

Critchley’s comments come after an allegation of racism was reported to Lancashire Police following an incident during Tuesday night’s game against Coventry City.

A comment made towards a Coventry player was reported to the fourth official during the game.

Blackpool and Coventry were also made aware of the complaint, with Lancashire Police informed later on.

“It’s totally unacceptable,” Critchley added.

“We supported Grant Ward as a club last season (after the midfielder was racially abused on social media) and we’ll support the police and Coventry in this investigation.

“If proven guilty, we’ll take the strongest action we can, so as a football club, we don’t accept anything of that nature.

“We want the supporters to come and support us and get behind the team, and there’s no place for anything like that at Blackpool Football Club.

“I was totally unaware of the incident until after the game. I believe it was around the 70th minute mark and it came from my side, but it’s not something I picked up on.

“I didn’t see, at the time, any reaction or anything reported to the referee or the fourth official.

“I didn’t see it, but if it’s happened and we’ve got footage, then we’ll be supportive of any action that is taken.”

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