Seven-time Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton has hit back with vengeance at a minority of England fans who hurled racist abuse towards the England trio who missed penalties in their Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy on Sunday night. Both Gareth Southgate and the FA have condemned the abuse as ‘unforgiveable’ as many call to support our defeated finalists.
Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka were the unfortunate trio to miss their penalties in the shootout against Italy.
Where Rashford missed the target, Sancho and Saka both saw their shots saved, with the latter visibly distraught after seeing the trophy slip from England’s grasp as a result.
All either in their teens or early-twenties, the general response has been one of support for England’s heroic youngsters.
However, deeply concerning instances of racism directed towards them have been brought to attention on social media since the result was confirmed.
“To be in the final and with such a diverse team is a huge achievement we should all be proud of but as the players stepped up to take the penalties I was worried.
“The pressure to deliver is felt by every sportsperson but when you are a minority representing your country this is a layered experience.
“Success would feel like a double victory, but a miss feels like a two-fold failure when it’s compounded with racist abuse.
“The disgusting behaviour by the few, shows how much work that still needs to be done. I hope that this opens a conversation around acceptance.
“We must work towards a society that doesn’t require Black players to prove their value or place in society only through victory.
“Ultimately everyone on the England team should be so proud of their achievement and how they represented us.”
The incidents are currently under investigation by the FA as more and more voices within sport have their say on an ugly aftermath to a momentous day for the nation.
Particularly when it comes to a character like Rashford, who was awarded an MBE in October for his campaign to grant free school means for children in need, directing racist abuse towards him or his fellow young men in Sancho or Saka seems a troubling way to end a magical summer for English football.