June 2 – Borussia Dortmund’s England international winger Jadon Sancho was not booked for his ‘Justice for George Floyd’ protest but because he removed his shirt, the German Football Association (DFB) has clarified.
Sancho celebrated the first goal in his second-half hat-trick for Borussia Dortmund in its 6-1 rout of SC Paderborn on Sunday by revealing an undershirt with a message of support for Floyd whose death in Minneapolis after a white policeman knelt on his neck has caused a wave of nationwide rioting and protests worldwide
Football’s law-making body, the International FA Board (IFAB), state equipment must not have any political, religious or personal slogans, statements or images.
The IFAB also states that players will be cautioned for “removing the shirt or covering the head with the shirt”.
“This is clearly defined as illegal conduct as per Law 12 and does not have anything to do with any political message,” Lutz Michael Froehlich, the DFB sporting director of elite referees at the DFB, said.
DFB said it was reviewing Sancho’s and that of Schalke’s US international Weston McKennie, who wore an armband with the slogan “Justice for George”.
“Part of these examinations is to ascertain whether during matches and on the pitch are the right place for these actions,” DFB vice president Rainer Koch said, adding that he respected and understood the players’ actions.
“The game itself should remain free of political statements or messages of any kind… There are of course opportunities before and after the match for these kinds of things.
“We’ll have to wait and see whether sanctions are required in these instances.”
Borussia Moenchengladbach’s Marcus Thuram took a knee to honour Floyd after scoring but the DFB said that was “open to interpretation” and not against the rules.
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