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Schalke and USMNT midfielder Weston McKennie: Trump not right for job of U.S. president

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Steffen: Donald Trump 'ignoring the black community' (0:48)

USMNT's Zack Steffen doubles down on Weston McKennie's comments about Donald Trump. (0:48)

United States men's national team midfielder Weston McKennie told Sport Bild that he thinks Donald Trump can be called a racist, which makes him not right for the job of U.S. president.

McKennie, a Texas native who plays in the Bundesliga for Schalke 04, recently displayed his support on the pitch for George Floyd by wearing an armband with the message "Justice for George" during a May 30 match against Werder Bremen. After the match, Schalke tweeted an image of the midfielder wearing the armband with the #JusticeForGeorge hashtag.

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Floyd, a black man, died while handcuffed in police custody in Minnesota after pleading that he could not breathe. A white police officer, Derek Chauvin, kept his knee on Floyd's neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds, according to the criminal complaint against him.

Floyd's death has sparked a global reckoning over police brutality and racial prejudice.

"I don't think that Trump is the right one for the job as the president," McKennie said in the interview, which was published in German. "I stand by these words. I believe he doesn't understand the responsibility he has for the entire country. I think he's ignorant. I don't support him a bit. I don't think he's a man to stand by his word. In my eyes, you can call him racist."

McKennie also said he objected to the use of police force to break up crowds at peaceful Black Lives Matter demonstrations and said the U.S. government sends the wrong message with those actions.

"There might be a small minority which does not protest peacefully. But the majority does it," he said. "And if you then fire with tear gas and rubber bullets, it rather looks that the government rather wants to provoke something to create a false image. If [Trump] walks to the church and poses with the Bible, it's just not the truth. It's like in those videos in which you can see that peaceful demonstrators are attacked."

U.S. national team goalkeeper Zack Steffen, who is on loan at Fortuna Dusseldorf but isn't playing because of injury, reiterated his stance on Wednesday.

"It's sad. It gives me a lot of emotions," Steffen told SID, Germany's largest sports wire service. "I am proud to see all the people protesting and standing up with the black community and the African American community. I am mad at the higher power of people in America and how clearly unjust they are treating the black community.

"It's needed. It's necessary what we are doing. The change that is gonna come needs to come. It's unfortunate that it happened this way. The video with George Floyd and police brutality -- that's gotta go. It's inhumane. Every person should feel equal and be equal in this world."

Steffen last week told ESPN's Taylor Twellman that he felt safer in Germany than in the U.S. after watching the video of Floyd's death.

"This video and everything that has come after this video has just opened up America for what it really is," Steffen told SID. "I am proud of being American, but everything that we state in the Constitution, not everything but some things we state in the Constitution, are not being lived up by. And that's gotta change."

McKennie was not sanctioned for his use of the armband after Floyd's death. The German federation has said it opposes punishing players for on-field protests related to Floyd's death because it believes their anti-racism messages match the federation's own principles.

FIFA, whose rules prohibit "any political, religious or personal slogans, statements or images" on equipment, in a rare public statement urged competition organizers to apply "common sense'' and consider not sanctioning players for solidarity with George Floyd during matches.