Germany will not face any disciplinary action after Hansi Flick’s team covered their mouths during their team photo against Japan in protest of FIFA’s decision to ban the OneLove bracelet at the World Cup in Qatar. The 2014 world champions were one of seven nations to wear the armband in support of the LGBTQ+ community before being told captain Manuel Neuer could face a one-match suspension if he wore the colorful symbol of inclusion.
FIFA’s decision to ban the armband has been fiercely scrutinized and the timing of the call, which came just hours before England’s opening World Cup match against Iran on Monday, has left managers and players in the dark. tournament scratching his head in frustration.
Initially, it was suggested that the captains could be booked for the political gesture, but further details emerged confirming that the players were actually threatened with bans, putting countries in a corner.
Shortly after Germany’s gesture, the German Football Federation issued the following statement: “With our captain’s armband, we wanted to set an example of the values we live by in the national team: diversity and mutual respect. Being loud together with other nations.”
“Human rights are non-negotiable,” the statement added, and “denying us the bracelet is like denying us a voice. We maintain our position.
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Six of Germany’s players, including Neuer, wore rainbow shoelaces during their Group E opener, which ended in a sickening 2-1 loss to Japan.
Germany took the lead in the first half when Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan successfully dispatched a penalty.
But things got worse in the second half when Japan made several changes that turned the game upside down.
Substitutes Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano scored in an explosive second-half turnaround for the Asian underdogs.
Flick’s side had no response and did not appear to equalize as they searched for equalizer.
Arsenal defender Takehiro Tomiyasu also put on a brilliant display at the back after coming on at half time.
Germany now face the prospect of elimination after just one match as they look to turn things around when they take on Spain this weekend.
Luis Enrique’s team looks like one of the strongest in the tournament after beating Costa Rica 7-0 in their first game in Doha.
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