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English FA prepared to receive sanction from FIFA for ‘One Love’ armband

FA Chief Executive Mark Bullingham said that the FA are prepared to be fined for their unauthorised show of support.

Joe Brennan
DOHA, QATAR - NOVEMBER 18: England captain Harry Kane alongside Mason Mount (l) and Luke Shaw (r) during the England Training Session at Al Wakrah Stadium on November 18, 2022 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)
Michael SteeleGetty

In an interview from Qatar with Sky News, FA Chief Executive Mark Bullingham said that FIFA are yet to respond to the FA’s written request for permission to wear a ‘One Love’ armband in support of LGBTQ+ rights at the World Cup in Qatar. The letter was sent two months ago.

As such, the FA say they are ready and prepared to receive any potential repercussions for what would be constituted as a breakage of FIFA rules, as they currently do not have permission for their captain to wear the rainbow armband. While the garment does not openly reference LGBTQ+ rights, the colours are a universal symbol of inclusivity.

England using their presence to raise awareness

I think there is a possibility that we might be fined, and if we are, then we’ll pay the fine”, Bullingham told Sky News. “We think it is really important to show our values and that’s what we’ll be doing.” Sky News also confirmed that ex-Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale would be sporting the rainbow armband as captain of Wales.

Earlier this month, the Qatar Ambassador for the World Cup said in an interview that homosexuality was “damage in the mind”. Homosexuality is illegal in Qatar under Islamic Sharia law. England also invited migrant workers to partake in a training session after arriving in Qatar. The Guardian reported that over 6,500 migrant worker had died since the country was awarded the tournament back in 2010.

England’s World Cup fixtures

  • 21 November: Khalifa International Stadium: England-Iran 08:00 am ET / 05:00 am PT
  • 21 November: Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium: USA-Wales 02:00 pm ET / 11:00 am PT
  • 25 November: Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium: Wales-Iran 05:00 am ET / 02:00 am PT
  • 25 November: Al Bayt Stadium: England-USA 2:00 pm ET / 11:00 am PT
  • 29 November: Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium: Wales-England 2:00 pm ET / 11:00 am PT
  • 29 November: Al Thumama Stadium: Iran-USA 2:00 pm ET / 11:00 am PT

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