England players were jeered while taking the knee ahead of a Nations League loss at Hungary where the crowd of 30,000 was mainly filled with children on Saturday.
The youngsters were allowed into the stadium despite Hungary being ordered to play the game without fans as a punishment for racially abusing opposing players and holding up anti-gay banners at the European Championship last year. One adult accompanies every 10 children under the regulations.
“How that aligns with the decision is difficult to understand,” England coach Gareth Southgate said after losing 1-0 at Puskas Arena.
“The atmosphere when we arrived at the stadium, there were kids lining the streets, it was really friendly. They were waving when we were walking out to warm up. I thought there were sort of pantomime boos when our team came out to warm up.
“That was different with the taking of the knee but that felt like inherited thinking to me. We do it (taking the knee) to try to educate and I think young people can only be influenced by older people.”