Interview

Alonso alternative to taking knee and how he chooses to support equality

Marcos Alonso has explained why he is taking a stand against racism in his own way before matches and reflected on the London derby victory over Tottenham Hotspur.

It has been noticed at recent matches that, unlike the majority of his team-mates and players around the Premier League, Alonso has remained standing after the referee’s whistle for the start of matches, rather than taking a knee in the now familiar sight.

However, the Spaniard has emphasised he is fully committed to fighting discrimination, but prefers to do so by highlighting the football-specific anti-racism campaigns like the Premier League’s No Room For Racism, or UEFA’s No To Racism, at games.

‘I am fully against racism and I’m against every type of discrimination and I just prefer to put my finger to the badge where it says No To Racism, like they do in some other sports and football in other countries,’ he explained. ‘I prefer to do it this way and, of course, to say very clearly that I am against racism and I respect everybody.

‘I just prefer to do it this way, it’s my way to do it, and maybe I think it’s losing a bit of strength the other way. So I just prefer to do it this way and to show I am fully supportive of fighting against racism.

‘For now I prefer to point to the sleeve and that’s what I will do.’

Alonso also discussed Sunday’s 3-0 victory away at Tottenham in the Premier League, which left him delighted with the way we made use of a half-time reshuffle to dominate the second period, with all three goals coming after the break, including Thiago Silva’s opener from Alonso’s corner just four minutes into the half.

‘We started okay, controlling the game a little bit, but the longer the first half went on, we were finding some difficulties and we were trying to rush things a bit, and they are also a good team.

‘Then in the second half we came out with clear ideas and I think the first goal was important to gain a little bit of confidence and keep going for more. In the end, it was a top performance from everyone and I’m very happy with the three points.’

As well as taking us top of the table, the match showed the strength in depth available to Thomas Tuchel at Chelsea, as he made five changes to the team which had beaten Aston Villa by the same scoreline in our previous Premier League fixture, in addition to our substitutes making an impact off the bench, with N’Golo Kante scoring our second goal and Timo Werner setting up the third.

‘That’s great for the team and it’s important,’ added Alonso. ‘These days there are so many games and, of course, there will be games for everybody. I’m sure we’re going to need everyone and we need to be together getting the points, and try to do our best week in, week out, because the Premier League is very tough this season and it’s going to be long and tough to stay up there for the whole year.’

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