UEFA make stance clear to Harry Kane and co after World Cup row angered England camp | Football | Sport

UEFA have told captains hoping to wear Pride armbands at Euro 2024 that their nations must seek permission from the governing body. England and several other European countries were angered at the 2022 World Cup when FIFA banned rainbow-coloured armbands on the eve of the tournament in Qatar.

Harry Kane wore the Pride armband during England’s defeat by Iceland last Friday. It was not worn by Kieran Trippier or substitute Kane during the victory over Bosnia the previous Monday, and the Football Association have not clarified whether Kane will wear it in England’s first game of Euro 2024 against Serbia on Sunday.

England have previously worn the armband during Pride Month, which takes place every June, to show solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community. However, they will need to ask UEFA for permission if they wish to wear it during Euro 2024.

FIFA caused a row the day before the Three Lions’ first World Cup game against Iran in November 2022. Several European nations believed they had the green light to feature the Pride colours on a One Love-branded armband to be worn by their captains.

However, FIFA banned countries from wearing them and warned that captains faced being booked if they entered the field of play wearing anything other than the permitted armbands. The world governing body issued a range of armbands that featured social awareness messaging.

Kane and Germany captain Manuel Neuer wore rainbow-coloured armbands during England’s 2-0 victory at Euro 2020. It came after UEFA dropped an investigation into Neuer for wearing the armband during Germany’s first two matches of the tournament in 2021.

Asked to clarify its stance ahead of Euro 2024, UEFA have told Express Sport that countries must seek permission from the governing body’s administration to wear their own armbands. UEFA are willing to grant exceptions for a solitary match, like England vs Germany in 2021, or for the duration of a tournament.

Upon arriving in Germany, each nation will have UEFA’s own-brand captain’s armbands delivered to their team bases. The accessories feature a ‘respect’ message and have been worn during UEFA competitions for several years.

England, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland and Wales said they were frustrated to have been banned from wearing the One Love armbands during the 2022 World Cup.

A statement released at the time on behalf of the seven countries read: “FIFA has been very clear that it will impose sporting sanctions if our captains wear the armbands on the field of play.

“As national federations, we can’t put our players in a position where they could face sporting sanctions including bookings, so we have asked the captains not to attempt to wear the armbands in FIFA World Cup games.”

They added: “We wrote to FIFA in September [2022] informing them of our wish to wear the One Love armband to actively support inclusion in football, and had no response. Our players and coaches are disappointed – they are strong supporters of inclusion and will show support in other ways.”

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