Dutch football will use OneLove armband at Qatar World Cup despite fine possibility
The Dutch national football team will play with the OneLove captain’s armband at the World Cup in Qatar, even if there are consequences. “We will make that statement. And if there’s a fine, let there be,” KNVB secretary-general Gijs de Jong said to NOS.
The OneLove campaign is a Dutch football initiative for connection and acceptance in football and against any form of discrimination. Since September of this year, the captains of the national teams of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, England, Wales, Belgium, France, Germany, Switzerland, and the Netherlands have been playing with the OneLove armband.
The eight teams that qualified for the World Cup, including the Netherlands, all expressed their intention also to wear the armband in Qatar, where homosexuality is illegal and human rights are under pressure. The world football association FIFA never commented on the announcement, neither with a ban nor approval.
Earlier this week, the football unions of Wales and England already announced that a possible fine would not deter them. The KNVB is now following suit, though the Dutch football association has faced criticism for not expressing explicit criticism of the human rights violations in Qatar. According to Amnesty International, thousands of migrant workers have died building stadiums and infrastructure for the Qatar World Cup, and thousands more are still working in horrible circumstances.