England’s Harry Kane will wear One Love armband at World Cup

Harry Kane has said he will wear the ‘OneLove’ armband despite the threat of a fine and a yellow card at the start of the match as a row between FIFA and various European football associations escalates.

Nine countries, including Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, agreed in September to wear the armband as a symbol of diversity, inclusion and anti-discrimination amid concerns about World Cup host Qatar’s human rights record.

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Sources have told ESPN that the FA and others involved have informed FIFA and UEFA of their intentions in a letter. Both organizations do not normally allow teams to make political statements, but UEFA did not allow armbands to be used in Nations League matches.

FIFA did not clarify their position and just a day before the start of the World Cup, it launched its armbands for all captains to promote social awareness.

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Nine nations were prepared to accept fines for the move, but now there are proposals that every captain could receive a yellow card at the start of each match.

Presenting that as a possibility, Kane said: “I think we’ve made it clear as a team, as a staff and as an organization, that we want to hang up the armband. I know the FA are talking to FIFA at the moment and I’m sure by the time of tomorrow’s game We will decide.

England begin Group C play against Iran on Monday before playing the USA and Wales.

“I can’t add anything to what Harry said. I know there are talks going on,” Southgate said when asked about his opinion on the possibility of Kane getting a yellow card in such circumstances.

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“I think a number of European countries have spoken and we have made our position clear. So hopefully everything will be resolved before the game.”

Although Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer confirmed on Saturday that he will wear the armband, England will be the first of nine nations to actually play in the final.

Negotiations between FIFA and the countries involved continue. ESPN reached out to FIFA to clarify the situation, but a spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.

Meanwhile, Southgate confirmed that England will kneel before kick-off to continue a separate anti-discrimination gesture that England made at last year’s delayed Euro 2020 finals.

The Premier League adopted the same move before every game earlier this season when it was decided that teams would only kneel before the most watched matches.

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Internal talks between England’s players and staff took place at the team’s Al Wakrah training base on Sunday and Southgate confirmed they had decided to move on.

“We’ve talked about kneeling, we feel we have to,” Southgate said. This is what we stand for as a team and have done for a long time.

“Of course, we understand that in the Premier League, clubs have decided to do this only for special games and big occasions. We feel this is the biggest game and we think it’s a strong statement that “It will be for young people around the world. In particular, we realize that inclusion is very important.”

Southgate also ruled James Maddison out of the game against Iran due to a knee problem, adding that it was too early for Kyle Walker to start as he recovers from groin surgery.


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