Germany have gone against the FIFA directive and used their platform to protest the treatment of the LGBTQI+ community in Qatar, as it hosts the 2022 World Cup.
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Captains of England, Denmark, Belgium, Germany, Wales, Switzerland and the Netherlands were due to wear a ‘One Love’ armband in order to raise awareness of the inhumane treatment of the queer community, but after FIFA made it clear that players might be punished due with suspension or yellow cards, England, the Netherlands, Wales and Denmark backed out of the protest.
Belgium and Switzerland are yet to play, but the Germany team covered their mouths in their team photo, alluding to the fact that they felt they had been silenced by FIFA.
German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser also attended the match in the stands wearing the One Love Armband. Back in Germany, supermarket chain Rewe pulled a sponsorship deal with the German Football Association (DFB) over the decision, which previously had been not to wear it.
Shortly after kick-off, the German national team released a statement on Twitter saying that they wanted to have a voice, as well as declaring human rights non-negotiable.
It is not yet clear whether FIFA will take any action. Goalkeeper and captain Manuel Neuer wore the armband, and was not punished with a booking as many had said they might be.
Credit: Football Espana