The pro-LGBTQ+ One Love armband will continue to be restricted by Fifa at the Women’s World Cup finals, but the game’s global governing body is developing its own variant with the same color scheme that captains will be permitted to wear throughout the competition.
BREAKING: FIFA have confirmed that players will face sanctions for wearing armbands with messages of support during the Women's World Cup ⚽ pic.twitter.com/lQylq6hjDu
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) June 30, 2023
For the 32 teams competition in Australia and New Zealand, Fifa has created eight new armbands, the first of which, titled “unite for inclusion,” features a love heart with the same colors as the One Love armband in the same order but does not contain the word “love.”
Some people may view the decision as a big concession from Fifa in light of the uproar around the armbands at the Qatar World Cup for men in 2022. Many people will believe that Fifa has not gone far enough to show support for the LGBTQ+ community because their larger laws remain the same and teams would still be subject to sports sanctions if they wore any other armbands during matches.
Along with several other European captains, England’s male captain Harry Kane had intended to wear the One Love armband during the men’s World Cup. However, the Football Association instructed Kane not to do so in response to Fifa’s threat of sporting consequences.
For a response to Fifa’s distribution of its eight campaign armbands, the FA has been approached. However, speaking before Fifa made its announcement, England midfielder Georgia Stanway said: “We know we stand for precisely the same thing no matter what the conclusion, whether it goes our way or not.
“Whether we are able to wear the armband or not, we will continue to support our desire to do so. We will uphold what we believed in and the desired objective, regardless of the outcome.
Stanway was speaking prior to Saturday’s exhibition match between England and Portugal at a sold-out Stadium MK. Before leaving for Australia on July 5 to get ready for their World Cup opening against Haiti in Brisbane on July 22, this is England’s final home game.
In order to “highlight social causes” throughout the tournament, Fifa said they have selected eight topics after consulting with players, FAs, and the UN.
Therefore, they are allowing the following eight armbands to be worn on the playing field:
- Unity for inclusion
- Unity for indigenous people
- Unity for gender equality
- Unity for peace
- Unity for education for all
- Unity for zero hunger
- Unity for ending violence against women
- Fotball is joy, peace, love, hope and passion
The participating teams can decide whether their skipper wears one of the aforementioned armbands throughout their campaign or chooses one to wear one per match.
“Football unites the world, and our global events, such as the Fifa Women’s World Cup, have a unique power to bring people together and provide joy, excitement, and passion,” declared Fifa President Gianni Infantino.
We have opted to emphasize a number of social themes – from inclusion to gender equality, from peace to ending hunger, from education to fighting domestic abuse – during all 64 matches after having some frank discussions with stakeholders, including member associations and players.
“It’s really good!” 🤩
Lionesses captain Millie Bright on her recovery from a knee injury 🏴 pic.twitter.com/526IfHQGx4
— Sky Sports WSL (@SkySportsWSL) June 27, 2023
Prior to that, when England plays Portugal on Saturday, the world will see how prepared they are for the World Cup. They will be without their captain Millie Bright, who is recovering from a knee injury ahead of schedule but is still out, and they will also be without Jordan Nobbs of Aston Villa, the midfielder, but Manchester City defender Alex Greenwood has been cleared to play.
Sarina Wiegman, the head coach, continued, “For them, it’s their first time at a World Cup, so that will be a test. Despite their technicality, they are not averse to playing long balls. They have some front-line quickness and players who can make unexpected plays.
“Hopefully they will use a style of play that we haven’t yet encountered. We’ll face difficulties. It’s also our first game following a break and two weeks of training at the end of the season. Therefore, we’re preparing.