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Zanka discussed Rainbow Laces on Sky Sports

Defender discusses campaign with LGBeeT supporters group and Premier League broadcaster

30 November 2021

The Premier League and all 20 clubs are currently celebrating Rainbow Lacess, demonstrating their ongoing commitment to supporting LGBTQ+ inclusion and making it clear that football is for everyone. All Premier League matches taking place between 27 November and 2 December are dedicated to Stonewall’s campaign. This includes our home match against Everton on Sunday, 28 November, and our away match against Tottenham Hotspur on Thursday, 2 December.

Brentford defender Zanka has been talking about the campaign. He spoke with supporter Gemma Teale, from the LGBeeTs group, for a special video feature. He was also featured extensively in the matchday programme for the Everton fixture.

Ahead of the match against Everton, Zanka and Gemma also spoke to Sky Sports. A video feature was compiled that ran ahead of the match. There is also a feature on the Sky Sports website.

"It's good that all of us - fans, players, staff, everybody - come together around a cause that was really overlooked for a few years before the campaign started," said Zanka. "But with these kinds of problems, it takes a while for people to catch up, and football is always a few years behind. There was going to come a point when we said, OK, we in football need to take this stance as well, because sports grounds around the world are actually one of the places where you hear most of these words being used. That's really unfortunate because football is supposed to bring people together and not alienate them."

"Brentford have always been keen, right from when we formed," Gemma told Sky Sports. "They got in contact with us, and brought us in to sit on their diversity working group. They have been super welcoming and responsive."

"One of the reasons we formed a group is that when you love football, it's your happy place - it's a huge part of your life. "When you hear things like homophobic comments at a game, it suggests that the stadium isn't for you, that you don't belong there, that you're less than others. "When you get those daggers of 'no, you don't belong', it's horrible and hurtful."

The full feature can be seen here.

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