Roy Keane discussed the 2022 World Cup opening squad photo protest in Germany and said the squad could do more.
The Germans all put their hands over their mouths during the pre-match team photo, protesting they couldn’t wear their OneLove captain’s armband. The DFB, the national football association, even threatened legal action.
“We wanted to use our captain’s armband to uphold the values we hold in the Germany national team: diversity and mutual respect. Together with other nations, we wanted our voice to be heard,” one post read. on the Germany National Team Twitter Account (opens in a new tab).
“It was not about making a political statement – human rights are not negotiable. This should be taken for granted, but it still isn’t.
“That’s why this message is so important to us. To deny us the armband is to deny us a voice. We maintain our position.”
ITV pundit Ian Wright described the protest as a step in the right direction – and while Roy Keane welcomed the move, he said it still didn’t feel like enough to him and players had the power to ‘go further.
We wanted to use our captain’s armband to defend the values we carry in the German national team: diversity and mutual respect. With other nations, we wanted to make our voice heard.November 23, 2022
“They wanted to wear the armband to get their protest across and I’m thrilled for them because they’ve done something on the world stage,” Wright said. “It’s a global moment for people to see, for the LGBTQ+ community to see that people stand in solidarity with them. I hope other teams do the same.”
“It’s a gesture, it’s a start, I still think they can do a lot more,” Keane said. “They say they were silenced…by whom?”
When presenter Mark Pougatch asked if the players’ own FA had asked them not to wear the armband, Keane had none of it.
“The most important people in football are the fans and the players,” he said. “Use your voice! Wear the armband! Leadership is about action, go out there and do it!
“It’s going to go on forever. Do it! Look, it’s a gesture, it’s a start, they can do more.”
Keane recently told Harry Kane and other captains to “take their meds” and accept the disciplinary action of wearing the protest armband.