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Premier League Jerseys to Replace Last Names With ‘Black Lives Matter’ in First Matches Back From Hiatus

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The Premier League will replace players’ last names with “Black Lives Matter” for the first 12 matches of its restart, according to a press release. Play is expected to return June 17 after a three month hiatus amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The move comes after members of the Premier League player’s union requested the jersey switch in a statement earlier this week.

“The League supports the player’s wish to have their names replaced with Black Lives Matter on the back of their shirts for the first 12 matches of the restarted 2019/20 season,” the league responded. “A Black Lives Matter logo will also feature on shirts for the remainder of the season, along with a badge thanking the NHS for their work during the Covid-19 crisis.”

On Wednesday, Eintracht Frankfurt, a team in Germany’s Bundesliga, wore jerseys featuring the slogan while Juventus and AC Milan wore “No Racism” on the back of their warm-ups before a match Friday afternoon.

In 2017, 33 percent of players in the Premier League were people of color. The British soccer league was 29 matches into league play when matches were halted amid Covid-19 concerns. Bundesliga is currently the only professional soccer league playing with no fans.

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