Eng­land and Ger­many to wear black arm­bands bear­ing pop­pies at Wem­b­ley

The Malta Business Weekly - - FRONT PAGE -

Eng­land and Ger­many play­ers will wear black arm­bands bear­ing pop­pies for Fri­day's friendly at Wem­b­ley.

The trib­ute is in re­mem­brance of mem­bers of the armed forces, said the Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion and Ger­man Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion.

FA chief ex­ec­u­tive Mar­tin Glenn called it "a show of sol­i­dar­ity and unity".

It comes af­ter rules were changed last month, al­low­ing the home na­tions to wear a poppy if op­pos­ing teams and the com­pe­ti­tion or­gan­iser agree to it.

Eng­land, Scot­land, Wales and North­ern Ire­land were all fined for dis­play­ing pop­pies dur­ing games in Novem­ber 2016 as Fifa deemed it to be a po­lit­i­cal sym­bol.

But all four teams said they would re­quest per­mis­sion to wear pop­pies dur­ing Novem­ber's in­ter­na­tional matches af­ter the rules were re­vised.

DFB pres­i­dent Rein­hard Grindel said poppy arm­bands were not "po­lit­i­cal pro­pa­ganda".

"They're about re­mem­ber­ing the kind of val­ues that were kicked to the ground in two World Wars but are cher­ished by foot­ball: re­spect, tol­er­ance, and hu­man­ity," he said.

A replica of 'The Truce' statue, which de­picts the his­toric World War I cease­fire where peace and games of foot­ball broke out be­tween English and Ger­man troops on Christ­mas Day in 1914, will be on tem­po­rary dis­play be­side the Bobby Moore statue at Wem­b­ley Sta­dium.

The FA and DFB also plan to com­mem­o­rate Armistice Day on 11 Novem­ber in a num­ber of other ways: • RAF, Army and Navy rep­re­sen­ta­tives will lay wreaths be­fore kick-off. • A pe­riod of si­lence will be held be­fore kick-off and af­ter the na­tional an­thems. • Dur­ing the si­lence, the Wem­b­ley Sta­dium arch will be lit in red and ' Foot­ball Re­mem­bers' will be dis­played on the sta­dium screen. • A ban­ner pa­rade, in­volv­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the mil­i­tary, will take place in­side the sta­dium be­fore kick-off. • There will be poppy and St Ge­orge's flag T-shirt lay­outs for fans in the east and west stands. • Poppy sellers will be at Wem­b­ley Sta­dium in the fan­zone, con­courses and on Olympic Way. North­ern Ire­land host Switzer­land in the first leg of their play­off for the 2018 World Cup while Scot­land face the Nether­lands at Pit­to­drie in a friendly to­day. Wales travel to France for a friendly on Fri­day.

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