Status: 11/22/2022 2:09 p.m
The Rewe Group is ending its cooperation with the German Football Association (DFB) with immediate effect. This is the Group’s response to the ban on the “OneLove” armband at the World Cup in Qatar by world football association FIFA.
The retail group is no longer a sponsor of the German Football Association DFB. The reason: The DFB had bowed to a decision by FIFA to ban the “OneLove” captain’s armband. This means that team captain and goalkeeper Manuel Neuer will not wear the bandage in the first game of the German team against Japan on Wednesday, as originally planned.
The bandage stands for human rights, diversity and women’s rights as well as for the fight against discrimination, racism and homophobia. It shows the slogan “OneLove” and a colorful heart. The World Cup host country Qatar has been criticized for violating the rights of women, homosexuals and migrant workers in particular.
“Scandalous attitude of FIFA”
In a press statement today, Rewe distanced itself from FIFA’s position. “We stand for diversity – and football is diversity, too,” says Rewe boss Lionel Souque. The retail and tourism group also defends this attitude against possible resistance. “For me, as the CEO of a diverse company and as a football fan, FIFA’s scandalous attitude is absolutely unacceptable,” said the Rewe boss, explaining the decision.
The company had already informed the DFB in October that it did not want to continue the partnership agreement. “After the current decisions of FIFA and the statements of FIFA President Infantino, however, the company feels called upon to distance itself very clearly from FIFA’s position and to its advertising rights from the contract with the DFB – especially in the context of the World Cup – to do without,” continues Rewe. A DFB scrapbook from Rewe is now being offered free of charge. Rewe wants to donate the proceeds from the sale so far.
Yellow card threat
In addition to the German team, six other European teams declared yesterday that they would not wear a “OneLove” armband at the World Cup games. FIFA had threatened any player with a yellow card should he wear the armband. “We are very frustrated with FIFA’s decision,” said DFB boss Bernd Neuendorf.
However, he qualified that the confrontation brought about by FIFA will not be carried out on the backs of the players. That’s why the German team is also without the armband, which should have set an example for tolerance and against discrimination.
Adidas calls for a liberal attitude
The sporting goods group Adidas, which sponsors both FIFA and the DFB, has now also spoken out. According to the sports information service (SID), the company called for a liberal attitude in the “OneLove” discussion. Adidas spokesman Oliver Brüggen told SID: “We are convinced that sport must be open to everyone”. We support “players and teams when they are committed to positive change.”