Manchester United players hold up Palestine flag at Old Trafford

United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says the views of players have to be respected

Manchester United’s Paul Pogba and Amad Diallo with a Palestine flag after their team’s draw with Fulham. File photograph: Laurence Griffiths/EPA

Manchester United’s Paul Pogba and Amad Diallo with a Palestine flag after their team’s draw with Fulham. File photograph: Laurence Griffiths/EPA

 

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said the views of players have to be respected after Paul Pogba and Amad Diallo held up a Palestine flag following Tuesday’s 1-1 Premier League draw with Fulham.

The Premier League match was played amid rising tensions and horrific violence in Gaza, and after thousands protested on the streets of Dublin and other major cities worldwide over the weekend in support of Palestine.

Leicester City’s Hamza Choudhury and Wesley Fofana had also held up a Palestine flag after the FA Cup final on Saturday and Solskjaer said his players had a right to their own views.

“I think we need to have players from different backgrounds, different cultures, different countries, and I think we need to respect their views if they differ from someone else’s,” Solskjaer told reporters.

Gaza medical officials say 217 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces, including 63 children, and more than 1,400 wounded since the fighting began on May 10th. Israeli authorities say 12 people have been killed in Israel.

“If my players think about other things than football that’s a positive thing and I think we’ve seen that with some of the players before that they do care about.

“Say Marcus Rashford, for example, the difference he’s made. We respect their right to have a different view.”

Dutch side PSV Eindhoven’s Israeli forward Eran Zahavi responded to Pogba and Diallo by trolling them with an edited picture of the pair on Instagram, replacing the Palestine flag they were carrying with an Israel one.

“Thanks guys,” Zahavi wrote in a caption that included an Israel flag. “We appreciate your support all over the world.”