Hertha Berlin players take a knee

Players and officials of Hertha Berlin became the first football team in Europe to “take a knee” in a show of support for “an open-minded world” before their Bundesliga match with Schalke on Saturday.

The gesture mimicked the protests at NFL games in America against perceived police brutality against minorities in the United States.

The NFL players and teams involved in the protests have been singled out for criticism by US President Donald Trump.

In a Tweet, the Berlin side wrote: “Hertha BSC stands for tolerance and responsibility.”

“For a tolerant Berlin and an open-minded world, now and forevermore”, it added.

“We are living in the 21st century, not the 18th century, but there are some people who haven’t developed their ideologies accordingly,” Hertha player Sebastian Langkamp told TV reporters.

“If we can give them a bit of help in doing so, then that’s good.”