Teams competing at the Women’s World Cup will be barred from wearing the ‘One Love’ armband but will be permitted to use an alternative version designed by FIFA.
The governing body banned Harry Kane and nine other captains from displaying the symbol, which promotes diversity and inclusion, in Qatar and threatened sporting sanctions for any country that defied the rules.
After months of talks with players, FIFA have designed eight different armbands that highlight a variety of social causes and captains will be able to choose which option they want to wear in Australia and New Zealand.
FIFA’s version of the ‘One Love’ armband – ‘Unite For Inclusion’ – features exactly the same colours in the same order and stands for ‘inclusion everywhere regardless of sexual orientation, race, skin colour, ethnic, national or social origin, gender, physical ability, language, religion, political opinion or other opinion, wealth, birth or other status, or any reason.’
The red, black and green colours on the logo are inspired by the Pan African flag and symbolise race, heritage and all gender identities while the pink, yellow and blue representing sexual orientation is based on the pansexual flag.
FIFA have presented eight ‘Unite For Inclusion’ armbands as alternatives for teams to wear
The One Love armband has been barred by FIFA ahead of the Women’s World Cup this summer
Some of the other social causes highlighted include Indigenous Peoples, gender equality and peace.
The eight different messages will be used in the eight round of fixtures – starting with the group stage and ending with the final. Players can wear a different armband for each fixture or pick one to use for the entire tournament.
But players do not have to wear one of the specific eight armbands and can instead choose to wear a neutral option of ‘Football Unites the World’.
An FA spokesperson said: ‘We know FIFA engaged with federations and players from around the world on the armbands to be worn at the FIFA Women’s World Cup. The next step is for our players to decide which of the options they will choose to wear.’
It is understood a decision will not be made immediately.
Players will not be allowed to wear the rainbow armband that Leah Williamson used during the European Championship last summer.
Millie Bright will captain England at the World Cup this summer, with Williamson absent through injury. But the regular skipper had earlier this year stated her desire to wear either the rainbow or ‘One Love’ option.
‘We’re never shy in saying what we stand for. We’re a squad that promotes inclusivity, equality, we obviously have a number of people that feel very strongly about it,’ Williamson said in February.
‘You hope it’s not a last minute call once we get there, it’s something we want to do all year round.
‘We have done it previously, I think the statement that was made at the Euros last summer with every team participating [wearing a rainbow armband], I think that was incredible.
‘Every picture we had with the trophy lift, there is a rainbow armband in there. I think it’s a great stage, a great time to promote those values that we believe in so much so I hope it’s the same [at the World Cup].’
Georgia Stanway said England will ‘stand for exactly the same thing’ before the announcement
Leah Williamson, now injured, said that she wanted to wear the One Love or rainbow armband
Speaking ahead of FIFA’s announcement and before England’s warm-up game with Portugal on Saturday, Georgia Stanway said the Lionesses will continue to stand by what they believe in.
‘No matter what the outcome is, whether it goes our way or not, we know that we still stand for exactly the same thing,’ Stanway said.
‘If we can or can’t wear the armband we know that we wanted to and we’ll stand by the fact that we wanted to. Whatever the outcome is we’ll still stand by whatever we believed in and whatever we wanted to be the resolution.
‘I feel like we’re at a place now where everybody could have their own individual opinion and we’re able to fight for what we believe in. Sarina is with us 100 percent, whatever we want to do she backs us. We make the final decision and Sarina comes with us.’
The full eight armband options are:
· Unite for Inclusion – in partnership with UN Human Rights
· Unite for Indigenous Peoples – in partnership with UN Human Rights
· Unite for Gender Equality – in partnership with UN Women
· Unite for Peace – in partnership with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency
· Unite for Education for All – in partnership with the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
· Unite for Zero Hunger – in partnership with the UN World Food Programme
· Unite for Ending Violence Against Women – in partnership with UN Women
· Football is Joy, Peace, Love, Hope & Passion – in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO)