Euro 2020 star Bukayo Saka has broken his silence after he was racially abused on social media following his decisive penalty shoot-out miss against Italy.
Rashford and Sancho both already came forward with statements about the situation, whilst Mikel Arteta offered an insight into how the young Arsenal winger is feeling at this extremely sad time.
As one would expect, the teenager has been suffering, but Arteta revealed that everyone at the club has been in contact with Saka and have shown him their support.
And now, Saka has broken his silence on the matter in an open, heartfelt message to all football fans.
“I have stayed away from social media for a few days to spend time with my family and reflect on the last few weeks,” he said on Twitter.
“This message won’t do it justice, how grateful I am for all the love that I have received, and I feel that I need to thank everyone who has supported me.
“There are no words to tell you how disappointed I was with the result and my penalty. I really believed we would win this for you. I’m sorry that we couldn’t bring it home for you this year, but I promise you that we will give everything we’ve got to make sure this generation knows how it feels to win.”
Saka continued to explain his post-match reaction, and emphasised how much he was hurting, but he won’t let any negativity affect him moving forward. He also thanked everyone for sending him messages of support, in what has been a show of solidarity amongst true football fans.
However, even though he shouldn’t have to do so, Saka was forced to call out social media platforms to do better, and reinforced the important message that there’s no place for hate in football or anywhere else in society.
“To the social media platforms Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, I don’t want any child or adult to have to receive the hateful and hurtful messages that me, Marcus, and Jadon have received this week.
“I knew instantly the kind of hate that I was about to receive and that is a sad reality of that your powerful platforms are not doing enough to stop these messages.
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“There is no place for racism or hate of any kind in football or in any area of society and to the majority of people coming together to call out the people sending these messages, by taking action and reporting these comments to the police and by driving out the hate by being kind to one another, we will win.
“Love always wins.”
Saka’s message is a powerful one that needs to be heeded, not just by football fans, but by everyone.
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