Munich (dpa) – Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting fell to one knee like American soccer player Colin Kaepernick, raised his right fist and closed his eyes for a moment.
After his goal to 2-0 in the Champions League against Lokomotiv Moscow, the FC Bayern Munich striker showed a strong gesture against racism and solidarity with his football colleagues in Paris.
“You have to send a signal, we must not stop fighting racism in any way,” Choupo-Moting emphasized. “The fight against it continues. You can’t look the other way, you have to be active and take a stand,” said Cameroon’s longtime national footballer.
After his goal to the final standings, the 31-year-old mimicked the kneeling of Kaepernick, who had protested racism and police brutality in the 2016 San Francisco 49ers. The same gesture had previously shown the former teammates of Choupo-Moting from Paris Saint-Germain and the professionals from Basaksehir Istanbul before the match resumed on Wednesday evening with a new referee team.
Both teams had left the field in Paris the day before in protest after the fourth official reportedly referred to Istanbul assistant coach Pierre Webo with what is known in Germany as the “N-word”.
“It is still sad to see that this is still happening. It was a very good reaction from both sides Paris and Basaksehir,” said Choupo-Moting, who played for PSG last season and took care of his former friends. Superstar Neymar feels connected. “Respect for both teams. I think everyone in the world has seen it.”
PSG coach Thomas Tuchel had given the events of the fourth official a lot of space before the game continued. “It’s important to talk about it, to talk to each other. Also to understand what such things mean and what our fellow humans mean, how something is received,” Tuchel said on TV broadcaster Sky.
“That was a clear statement yesterday, also a necessary statement,” he said after Paris won the game 5-1. There was no team meeting in preparation for the opponent.
Le Parisien – Aujourd’hui en France in France wrote, “Neymar, Mbappé, Kimpembe and their teammates have broken with the image of selfish billionaires. They made a free choice to join forces with their opponents of the evening and with rebel each other. “With the cancellation, the players had also made it clear” that they no longer trust the football officials to make the right decisions about such issues. “
The DFB published a video on Thursday in which the national team around national team coach Joachim Löw defends itself against any form of hostility – not least on social media: “Hate is not a human right” is the message.
Former international Gerald Asamoah considered the Paris and Istanbul players’ reaction to the charge of racism as a positive signal against discrimination. “It was an extremely important sign that both teams were leaving the field together. It was clear: we don’t tolerate something like that. We don’t care,” the current FC Schalke 04 pledges manager told the Funke media group newspapers. (Thursday).
“Respect for setting such a great example in such a match. Racism should not occur in football and in general,” said Bayern coach Hansi Flick before the final group match against Moscow and later praised Choupo’s reaction. Motivation: to have a role model position. You have to show respect to the players, that’s exactly the right gesture. “