Manuel Neuer will wear a special captain’s armband in the upcoming Nations League games and at the World Cup in Qatar to take a stand against discrimination and for diversity. The bandage is adorned with a heart in bright colors that stand for diversity and the inscription “One Love”. This was announced by the German Football Association (DFB) on Wednesday.
“The love of football unites us all. No matter where we come from, what we look like and who we love. Football is for everyone. And football must be there for everyone who feels discriminated against and excluded, all over the world,” said Neuer.
The captains of England, the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Wales, France, Denmark, Norway and Sweden will also take part – although not all nations have qualified for the controversial Desert World Cup (20 November to 18 December).
“I am proud to send this message along with my fellow captains from other nations. Because every vote counts,” said Neuer, who will wear the captain’s armband for the first time on Friday (8.45 p.m./in the FAZ live ticker for the Nations League and on ZDF) in the Nations League in Leipzig against Hungary. At the 2021 European Football Championship, Neuer had played with a captain’s armband in rainbow colors as a message against homophobia.
The Polish captain Robert Lewandowski wants to wear a captain’s armband in the national colors of Ukraine at the World Cup in Qatar. The world footballer announced this after meeting the Ukrainian football idol Andriy Shevchenko, who presented him with the blue and yellow armband as a gift. “Thank you, Andriy. It was a pleasure to meet you. It will be my honor to wear this captain’s armband in the colors of Ukraine at the World Cup,” Lewandowski wrote on Instagram and Twitter.
After the Russian attack, Lewandowski was one of the first sports stars to take the side of Ukraine and, among other things, called for his Poles’ World Cup qualifier against Russia to be canceled. Back in March, the then Bayern captain wore a blue and yellow captain’s armband in the Bundesliga game against Eintracht Frankfurt.
Poland will meet former world champions Argentina, Mexico and Saudi Arabia in Group C at the World Cup. Ukraine did not qualify for the finals.