Before their new home league fixture, the London club condemned the actions of a significant portion of the crowd at The Den.
After having their fans boo players for taking a knee in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter campaign, Millwall has released a statement.
For the first time in almost nine months on Saturday, fans were given entry to The Den for the Championship clash against Derby County, with stadiums now cleared in several places across the nation to open their doors to the public again with a reduced capacity in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
In the league standings, Millwall lost the match 1-0 to slip down to 14th, but the game was overshadowed by the home crowd’s behavior prior to kick-off.
Since June, footballers have shown their support for the global anti-racism movement by falling to one knee before matches, and this weekend at The Den, both sets of players continued the pattern, only to face a chorus of jeers from the stands.
Rams forward Colin Kazim-Richards stood and gave a raised-fist salute of power as his peers took his knee, and supporters of the Lions replied by booing loudly before the referee blew his whistle to mark the start of the game.
Millwall shared their dissatisfaction with the responsible fans while pledging to do whatever they can to prevent the incident from being repeated in the future.
An official statement on the club’s website read, “Millwall Football Club was dismayed and saddened by events which marred Saturday’s game against Derby County at The Den”
In recent months, the club has worked hard to prepare for the return of fans and what was expected to be an optimistic and exciting opportunity was totally overshadowed, much to the tremendous disappointment and anger of those who contributed to those efforts.
The effect of such events is felt not only by the players and management but by those who work in the club and in the confidence of its academy and community, where so many employees and volunteers undertake enthusiastic efforts to improve the image of Millwall day after day, year after year. The club is not going to cause their good job to be in vain.
Players continue to use the greatest forum they have to help the movement for progress, not just in sports, but generally in society.
The club has worked tirelessly in recent months to prepare for the return of fans and was completely overwhelmed by what was supposed to be an ambitious and exciting opportunity, much to the great disappointment and frustration of those who contributed to those efforts.
The influence of such events is felt not only by the players and management, but by those who work in the club and in the confidence of its academy and community, where so many staff and volunteers make enthusiastic efforts day after day, year after year to enhance Millwall’s profile. The club will not cause their good work to be in vain.
Players continue to use the greatest platform they need to help promote the revolution, not only in sports, but in society in general.