Glasgow footballer slams FIFA for threatening the LGTBQ+ community
Zander Murray, who plays for Gala Fairydean Rovers, has called on FIFA to do more during the World Cup following a crackdown on captains wearing the ONELOVE armband with a threat of a yellow card to players who wear the armband during the lucrative competition.
A Glasgow footballer has slammed FIFA after Scotland’s first openly gay player said the crackdown by the governing body on OneLove armbands was a ‘direct attack’ on the LGTBQ+ community.
Zander Murray voiced his disappointment with their ‘sanctions’ and insisted that ‘you really can’t attack the players here’ after the threat of a yellow card was too much to risk for the FA and the Welsh FA.
FIFA threatened disciplinary action if England or Wales wore the armband in their respective World Cup games against Iran and USA respectively.
The Gala Fairydean Rovers striker spoke on Good Morning Britain and said, “There will be gay players in the World Cup, in fact, I know for a fact there is.
“They are having to hide their identity, hide who they truly are, it hurts me to the core.
“The armband, what is that meant to represent? That is meant to represent inclusivity in our sport to fight against discrimnation.
“Personally, I feel this is a direct attack on us in the community, the OneLove armband is a small gesture that represents us all.
“There is fans wearing rainbow hats that can’t get into watch games or stadiums unless they take them off and it’s just baffling.
“Deeper than all of this, it’s FIFA that’s put out these potential sanctions, it’s a tournament where if you get a couple of yellow cards then your banned from representing your country.
“Christian Eriksen (Denmark captain) says he’s going to still keep wearing the armband, hopefully that will change the opinions of FIFA and people within football.”
Following his interview on ITV, Mr Murray spoke on Twitter and said, “Not speaking out goes against everything I stand for and why I went public. Thanks to Good Morning Britain for having me on.”
Scottish Labour and Cooperative councillor for Irvine East praised Murray for coming out on national television and calling this out commenting, “Zander Murray is such a powerful role model for loads of LGBTQ young people.”
With England captain Harry Kane and Wales skipper Gareth Bale not wearing the armband, BBC Sport pundit Alex Scott was seen during the live broadcast wearing the OneLove armband which gained a lot of attention and plaudits on Social Media.
Anthony Stone spoke on Twitter about Scott taking the plunge and representing the LGBTQ+ community saying, “Alex, ignore the haters, they are just trying to drag people down. You’re a great pundit and presenter. Keep up the good work.”