As D.C. United prepare for Major League Soccer to return to play with training at Audi Field, they have also used their patch of real estate just off South Capitol Street to express solidarity with those protesting the killing of George Floyd by police and the Black Lives Matter movement.
An image posted by the club’s Twitter account shows the West flank of the Audi Field pitch painted in red, bold block lettering with the words “I Can’t Breathe,” a reference to Floyd’s last words as he died while being detained by Minneapolis police officers.
— dcunited (@dcunited) June 7, 2020
Smaller block letters in the center circle read “BLM,” a nod to the broader Black Lives Matter movement.
The words were painted by players, club staff and supporters, per Steven Goff of the Washington Post.
— Steven Goff (@SoccerInsider) June 7, 2020
The gesture has echoes of another similar move in Washington. Muriel Bowser, the city’s mayor, approved a giant street mural of the words “Black Lives Matter” on the stretch of 16th Street NW a couple blocks south of the White House.
Wow, it’s done! New “Black Lives Matter” Mural painted in #WashingtonDC on road to White House (16th St.)
They started at 3:00 am & just finished. Mayor Bowser approved it: pic.twitter.com/kqmknUOaDR
— Joyce Karam (@Joyce_Karam) June 5, 2020
Floyd died on May 25 at age 46. All four officers involved in the incident have been fired and charged. Officer Derek Chauvin is currently charged with second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.