"In consultation with our players and MLS, we have collectively decided to play the National Anthem before the players take the field for tonight's match against Nasvhille SC. Prior to start of the game, there will be a moment of silence for the players, coaches and all in attendance to promote racial equality."
In a conference call with media ahead of the game, FC Dallas President Dan Hunt explained the reasons behind the decision.
"The thought behind it is about balance," he said. "We have fans who are passionate about the national anthem and we want to honor and respect that and then we also want to recognize our players and their kneeling. We’ve got to address these social issues that we’ve been facing. This is to draw attention to social equality, these are things we have to work to in the fight against racism. We wanted to separate these two things and that was everybody’s wish here."
Hunt also said that a video of a fan throwing a bottle toward the field as players knelt to protest social injustice during the playing of the national anthem before last Wednesday's game against Nashville would be sent to MLS for review on Monday.
FC Dallas and Nashville SC kick off the second of two matches between the sides to restart their MLS campaigns at 8:30 pm ET (MLS Live on ESPN+ in US; DAZN in Canada). Nashville SC won the first matchup 1-0 on Wednesday.