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Infantino wants ‘One Love’ armband issue resolved before Women’s World Cup

Speaking in London, FIFA President Gianni Infantino confirmed that he wanted ‘dialogue with everyone involved’ as the World Cup looms in July.

The One Love captains armband
Naomi Baker - The FAGetty

England captain Leah Williamson sported the ‘One Love’ armband as the Lionesses triumphed in all three games in the recently played Arnold Clark Cup with the Arsenal player also stating her intent to wear the armband at the 2023 World Cup in Australia/New Zealand with the competition getting underway on 20 July.

The reappearance of the armband became a source of questioning as FIFA president Gianni Infantino faced the media following the weekend’s IFAB meeting in central London with the Swiss stating that he was committed to avoiding conflict over OneLove armbands at the Women’s World Cup, promising to “have a position in place well before” the tournament begins.

A number of national teams at the Qatar 2022 men’s World Cup, including Denmark, Wales, England and Germany, were planning to support the campaign that promotes inclusivity and opposes all discrimination.

 Chloe Kelly and Leah Williamson of England
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Chloe Kelly and Leah Williamson of England Warren LittleGetty

Their captains were planning on wearing the armband bearing the OneLove logo, but the teams backed down when FIFA threatened sporting sanctions – expected to be a yellow card for the captains.

Infantino was asked about the OneLove armbands following a meeting of football law-makers the International Football Association Board (IFAB).

He said: “What I can say on this issue is I think we all went through a learning process there [at the Qatar World Cup].

Gianni Infantino
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Gianni InfantinoDPA vía Europa Press

What we will try to do better this time is to search and look for dialogue with everyone involved – the captains, the federations, the players generally, FIFA – from all over the world to capture the different sensitivities, to explain, to exchange, and to see what can be done in order to express a position, a value or a feeling that somebody has without hurting anyone else.