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Coverage of England-Switzerland to open in black and white to honour Kick It Out

In a FA tribute to Kick It Out’s 25th birthday, England will play in black and white again for the first time in almost 50 years, albeit briefly.

The first 25 seconds of England’s friendly against Switzerland on Tuesday will be broadcast in black and white to honour the 25th anniversary of football’s anti-discrimination charity Kick It Out.

The picture on Sky Sports’ coverage of the game at Leicester’s King Power Stadium will switch to black and white as the teams take the pitch, and it will be first time England action has been broadcast without colour in nearly half a century.

The game, which kicks off at 8pm, has been dedicated to Kick It Out by the Football Association and England’s stars will show their support by warming up in branded t-shirts and entering the pitch alongside mascots chosen by the charity.

In a statement, the FA’s inclusion advisory board chairman Paul Elliott said: “Kick It Out have been a catalyst for the change in English football both on and off the pitch and we’re delighted to celebrate their inspirational work in promoting football for all.

“Hopefully the footage will encourage the millions of viewers at home to spend at least 25 seconds thinking about the importance of diversity in this beautiful game of ours.”

Kick It Out chair Lord Herman Ouseley said the charity, which was founded in 1993, was delighted with the gesture and hoped it would be a “powerful reminder of how far football has come in the last 25 years to make the a game a more open and diverse place”.

Build-up to the game between the teams ranked sixth (England) and eighth (Switzerland) in the world by FIFA starts on Sky Sports Main Event at 7pm.

Sky Sports’ director of content and production Steve Smith said: “Having supported Kick It Out all the way, we’re delighted to be able to help celebrate this landmark moment in such a unique way.”

England go into the match trying to avoid a fourth straight defeat, having lost their last two games at the World Cup this summer and their Nations League opener against Spain at Wembley on Saturday.

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