England match to be broadcast in black and white for 25 seconds to honour Kick It Out's 25th anniversary

10th September 2018

The opening 25 seconds of England’s fixture against Switzerland, which is live on Sky Sports Main Event from 7pm tomorrow (Tuesday 11th September), will be broadcast in black and white for the first time in nearly half a century, in a move by The Football Association to honour Kick It Out’s 25thanniversary.

Viewers tuning into Sky Sports’ live coverage on Tuesday evening will see the picture switch from colour to black and white as the teams enter the pitch at Leicester City’s King Power Stadium.

The historic footage will continue without colour for 25 seconds, in recognition of Kick It Out’s landmark anniversary and to celebrate the impact the organisation has made in tackling racism and all forms of discrimination in the game since 1993.

The international clash is dedicated to Kick It Out by The FA and England players will show their support by warming up in branded t-shirts and entering the pitch alongside eight mascots nominated by the organisation.

It follows The FA’s recent launch of the ‘In Pursuit of Progress’ plan, which is part of the organisation’s commitment to ensure the diversity of those leading and governing football better reflects what we see on the pitch in the modern game. The plan will deliver initiatives primarily focussed around gender and ethnicity across The FA’s general workforce and leadership roles, including coaching staff across the England teams. 

Paul Elliott, The FA’s Inclusion Advisory Board Chairman, said: “Kick It Out have been a catalyst for the change in English football both on and off the pitch and we’re delighted to celebrate their inspirational work in promoting football for all. Hopefully the footage will encourage the millions of viewers at home to spend at least 25 seconds thinking about the importance of diversity in this beautiful game of ours.

“We’re very grateful to Sky Sports for supporting the idea since its conception and look forward to seeing Three Lions in black and white for the first time in nearly 50 years.” 

Lord Herman Ouseley, Chair of Kick It Out, said: “We at Kick It Out are delighted with this gesture in recognition of our work to make football a better sport for all across the last 25 years.

“We hope the footage will be a powerful reminder of how far football has come in the last 25 years to make the game a more open and diverse place - welcoming to all regardless of age, disability, gender, race, religion or sexual orientation.”

Steve Smith, Sky Sports’ Director of Content and Production, said: “Over the past 25 years, the Kick It Out campaign has been instrumental in changing the landscape of English football. Having supported them all the way, we’re delighted to be able to help celebrate this landmark moment in such a unique way.”


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