United States men’s national soccer team defender Mark McKenzie shared the racist abuse he sees aimed at him on his social media channels following the 3-2 win over Mexico in the CONCACAF Nations League final on Sunday.
McKenzie, who is Black, shared a screenshot of the message on his Instagram story with a remark of his own.
“The amount of racial abuse and personal attacks on myself and family from ‘supporters’ and ‘non-supporters’ just ain’t it,” he said.
McKenzie racially abused after USMNT win
The screenshot was of a comment on one of his Instagram photos leading into the match. It included the racial remarks made after the win.
McKenzie, 22, misplayed a ball and gave it away, resulting in a goal for Mexico 63 seconds into the match. He was whistled for a handball in the 119th minute, but Ethan Horvath saved the penalty to protect the victory.
It was the same game forward Gio Reyna was hit in the head by a bottle thrown down onto the pitch. Fans in the same section threw more projectiles and a Mexican player was also hit in the head. And it follows fans in NBA arenas throwing things at players and being abusive toward their families in the playoffs the week prior.
Racism in soccer
Racist remarks from fans are a stain on the sport and players are calling it out around the globe. In March, former Arsenal striker Thierry Henry said he would leave social media until the platforms could properly regulate racism and bullying on their site.
His announcement came the week after a teenage midfielder for Boroussia Dortmund, Jude Bellingham, shared screenshots of abusive comments that included monkey and feces emojis. He captioned it, “just another day on social media…”
The abuse also rises to the level of threat. USMNT star Reggie Cannon faced backlash and threats with FC Dallas last year for kneeling during the anthem. He left to play for Boavista and told The Guardian death threats are a part of life in the U.S.
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