Qatar 2022: Belgium was unable to manage the “One Love” file

The profile of the “One Love” badge revived at the Belgian press conference. In fact, the rainbow made headlines again as the day progressed.

And as a reminder, captains of seven European teams, including Belgium, were required to wear this armband, which was specially decorated in the colors of pride in support of the LGBTQ+ community.

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However, FIFA ruled at the last minute that the captaincy violated the player’s uniform regulations.

The captains who wore it exposed themselves to sporting penalties, i.e. yellow cards, and the federations of the countries concerned wisely chose to leave it aside.

Canada does not appear to be planning any action to support diversity. Stephen Vittoria remained evasive on the subject Monday.

Afraid to speak

Belgium captain Eden Hazard was not present at the pre-match press conference on Tuesday, but Jan Vertonghen spoke hesitantly.

“I’m afraid to talk about it, because I don’t know if I can play if I talk. This is the first time I’ve experienced this and I hope it won’t happen again.

“I feel like we were being manipulated. An armband that says no to racism or discrimination sounds good to me, these are very simple messages, why can’t we just say that?

Despite his caution, Vertonghen repeatedly mentioned his fear of speaking because he did not want to be disciplined.

The story may not end there because FIFA’s decision to ban the captain’s armband does not pass in Germany. The federation (DFB) is even considering going to court in order to keep its own on the issue.

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It is clear that a rainbow simply does not pass through. On Monday, during the match between the United States and Wales, Welsh fans clashed with security.

Forbidden symbol

Members of the Welsh LGBT Supporters Association Rainbow Wall have been asked to remove their rainbow hats.

“They said (…) it was a taboo symbol and that we weren’t allowed to wear it on the field,” explained Laura McCallister, former captain of Wales’ selection, to AFP.

For its part, the Rainbow Wall channel reported in the evening that “Wales supporters were forced to remove” their rainbow hat. Not men, only women.

Before the match, American journalist Grant Wahl said on Twitter that security personnel detained him because he was wearing a rainbow jersey, “a mistake that was quickly corrected,” according to FIFA.

Another setback

In addition, the Belgian Confederation, which has been banned by FIFA from using its second set of T-shirts with the word “love” written on it, indicated on Tuesday that it would mask the reference.

A sticker will be attached to the word that appears on the collar of the shirt. This is a reference to Tomorrowland, a popular Belgian music festival.

Unveiling the shirt, the federation said: “This jersey is inspired by the famous Tomorrowland fireworks display and represents the shared values ​​of diversity, equality and inclusion.”

Above all, FIFA considers this to be a disguised advertisement, which is not permitted by the regulations governing equipment.

It’s just another way to limit references to diversity again in a situation where homosexuality is illegal.

Written in collaboration with Agence France-Presse

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