FIFA tells FAs to use common sense over player protests


FIFA has urged competition organisers to use “common sense” when considering whether to punish players for protesting against the death of George Floyd during matches.

The German FA (DFB) says it is considering sanctions against players after several demonstrated this weekend.

The players made the gestures after Floyd, who was black, died in Minneapolis after a white police officer knelt on his neck, despite Floyd warning he could not breathe.

FIFA told the Associated Press: “FIFA fully understands the depth of sentiment and concerns expressed by many footballers in light of the tragic circumstances of the George Floyd case.

“The application of the laws of the game… is left for the competitions’ organisers, which should use common sense and have in consideration the context surrounding the events.”

Jadon Sancho was shown a yellow card for removing his shirt to reveal a “Justice for George Floyd” message after scoring for Borussia Dortmund on Sunday. Team-mate Achraf Hakimi revealed the same message in the game.

On the same day, Marcus Thuram took a knee after scoring for Borussia Monchengladbach, while on Saturday, Schalke’s Weston McKennie wore an armband with the words “Justice for George”.

DFB vice president Rainer Koch said: “As is the case internationally, the game itself should remain free of political statements or messages of any kind.”

Mass protests have continued to take place in America since Floyd’s death, prompting President Donald Trump to threaten to use the army to restore order.

Post-mortems have classified Floyd’s death as a homicide, ruling he died of asphyxiation following compression to his neck and back.

RELATED STORY: Sancho reveals George Floyd t-shirt after Dortmund goal

By Associated Press

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