SOFIA (Reuters) – England made a significant statement against racism by beating Bulgaria 6-0 in a Euro 2020 qualifier that was twice halted by the referee after abuse of the visiting players, manager Gareth Southgate said on Monday. The match in Sofia was a high-profile implementation of a three-step protocol from European soccer’s governing body UEFA designed to tackle racist abuse from the crowd. “I don’t think that’s ever been a situation that’s happened before in international football,” said Southgate. “For me, an even bigger statement was the way our players played. “We’ve got players that have been through something they should never have to experience but have actually come off with a smile on their face because of how they’ve played. “They always want the story to be about football but they’ve also been part of something that I think will be bigger.” England center-back Tyrone Mings, who was making his senior debut and brought Southgate’s attention to the first incident after being targeted, said the players had made a collective decision to continue after halftime. “I think the way that we handled it, and the appropriate steps that were in place in the protocol that the team and… Read full this story
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