Whether Norway’s superstar Erling Haaland or the Netherlands around Frenkie de Jong: Before the World Cup qualifiers, several national teams positioned themselves in the debate about the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Norway, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands are protesting against Qatar.
These national teams encourage imitators.
The Swiss national team will probably not answer the call.
They rely on dialogue instead of boycott, it says at the association.
The DFB, however, received a shit storm.
Copying is expressly encouraged: In addition to the German national team, the Norwegians, Dutch and Danes also took action to draw attention to the human rights situation in the World Cup host country Qatar and encouraged possible imitators to send similar messages. On the Sunday evening before the game against Moldova, the Danes wore special t-shirts with the words “Football Supports Change” on them.
The same message was on the black shirts worn by the Dutch internationals around the former Bundesliga professionals Luuk de Jong and Davy Klaassen and Barça star Frenkie de Jong on Saturday evening’s World Cup qualifier against Latvia until shortly before kick-off. Bondscoach Frank de Boer’s team then played in their traditional Oranje jerseys in Amsterdam – and won 2-0.
Left hand with five fingers spread apart
Dortmund’s super striker Erling Haaland and his Norwegian team-mates presented white shirts with the imprint: “Human rights – on and off the pitch” before the 3-0 defeat against Turkey. In addition, Norway and Germany were marked with a tick, underneath was “Next?” – who’s next? To do this, the players had raised their left hand with five fingers spread apart. “The symbol is the best known for human rights,” said Sindre Stranden Tollefsen from Amnesty Norway to the Norwegian newspaper “Dagbladet”.
The players of national coach Ståle Solbakken had already used their first qualifying game against Gibraltar (3-0) on Wednesday to send a silent message about the human rights situation in Qatar. They wore shirts with the lettering for human rights at the national anthem. One day later, before the kick-off against Iceland (3-0), the German national team presented shirts with letters that together formed the word “Human Rights”.
However, the DFB-Elf received a shit storm for the video for this action. Twitter users accuse the DFB of “marketing with human rights”. One user writes: “Such marketing videos take away the seriousness of the topic, I think.”
Others speak of a “double standard”.
Julia Duchrow, deputy general secretary of Amnesty International in Germany, praised the DFB to the German press agency: “The jersey campaign of the German national team sends a high-profile signal for human rights. The times when sport had to be apolitical are over. “
Duchrow continues: “The serious human rights violations in Qatar will only change if the symbolic gesture has practical consequences. Amnesty encourages teams and association officials to find out where they will be playing, training and staying, and to use their voice and influence to ensure that the rights of migrant workers are protected. “
SFV relies on dialogue instead of boycott
A similar protest action by the Swiss national team is not expected in the near future. At 20 Minuten’s request, the Swiss Football Association (SFV) commented on a possible boycott: “In Switzerland there are no boycott demands on the part of the clubs. In principle, like the Norwegian Association, we are of the opinion that more can be achieved sustainably through dialogue than through a boycott. ” SFV President Dominique Blanc adds: “We want to use the dialogue with Amnesty International and FIFA to actively promote compliance with human rights and the improvement of workers’ rights, and we want to exert our influence. Amnesty is not in favor of a boycott either. We had our first talks with Fifa and Amnesty International last autumn. Further talks will follow. “
For Blanc speaks against a boycott: “The information available to us seems to show that the situation in Qatar has improved in recent years, which Amnesty International confirms. The organization of the World Cup can contribute to such improvements, since a country is exposed to the light of the whole world. For us, football should be used to promote human rights. “
As the World Cup host in 2022, Qatar is repeatedly criticized for exploiting guest workers. According to research by the Guardian, more than 6,500 guest workers from five Asian countries have died in the past ten years. Qatar’s government said that reforms in recent years have significantly improved the situation of workers.