This is easy – Fuck Fifa

Football’s governing body, Fifa, has turned down a request from England and Scotland for players to wear armbands featuring poppies on Armistice Day, the Scottish Football Association says. Does the design really breach a ban on “political” symbols, asks Stephen Fottrell.

So, every player sticks (OK, not every player, personal choice of course) a British Legion poppy in the button hole of their shirt then. Falls out after 2 minutes so what?

No, really, Fuck Fifa and their horse. It might even be a political symbol and it’s still Fuck Fifa.

25 thoughts on “This is easy – Fuck Fifa”

  1. I agree 100% with your sentiments but I think the last person who played football and had a button hole might have been Stanley Matthews.

  2. I’m with FIFA on this. When I grew up, only primary school kids sang the national anthem. Now everybody has to sing it or get vilified in the gutter press. Wearing poppies has become another form of virtue signalling, which is why I wear the one I bought 5 years ago and just put some change in the collection tin.

  3. Will any pressure be put on players to wear or not wear the poppy at any other time?

    It does seem to be making a mountain out of a molehill.

    At the end of the day Fifa is making itself look bad. Let them. The fans will understand. Other people? Why would their opinion in this matter?

  4. I bought a poppy made out of a brass shell fuse found on the battlefield at the Somme.

    RIP my relative, Ernest Moss, died on the first day of the 1916 battle.

  5. FIFA’s quite right to ban political symbols. But it’s absurd to suggest the poppy is a political symbol. It’s the exact opposite: an anti-political symbol.

  6. If the players individually choose to wear a poppy what exactly are FIFA to do, while they may be able to fine them or the club I’m pretty sure even they aren’t insane enough to try that

  7. Bloke in North Dorset

    Who’s likely to offended*? I’ve never heard of a German being offended when we wore them in Germany. When I’ve worn one when working around the world it’s been nothing more than a curiosity for most people I worked with.

    *Other than the usual people who specialise on taking offence on someone else’s behalf, but they can fuck off.

  8. Bloke in Costa Rica

    FIFA are only cutting up ‘cos they failed to get a backhander from the Haig Foundation in the form of underage hookers and cocaine.

  9. Bloke in North Dorset

    Off topic


    Can you listen to podcasts now? A good one on one of your Forbes favourite subjects of the minimum wage in Seattle. Apparently 2 things have happened:

    Whilst the economy has grown jobs in the restaurant trade haven’t grown in line.

    Some restaurants have removed the tip line from bills, incorporating it in to the price of the meal.


  10. “Say no to Racism!” FIFA are happy to promote this political statement. Poppy wearing is obviously beyond the Pale, however.

  11. Sponsorship is also fine, as they are paid lots of money.

    Why not have shirts made with the logo on them, and sign a contract for £1 with the British Legion? Voila! Sponsored jersey!

  12. My Brit colleagues and I wore poppies whilst attending a global team meeting in France some years ago. Not to make any particular point but because we alway do on the 11th. Only the Germans knew what they signified and took no offence. The hotel we stay in is a grand old chateau, owned and run by the same family for generations and proud of their history as active members of the resistance who hid and assisted downed airmen during WWII. The current patriarch asked us about the poppies whilst we were drinking in the bar – he had no idea what they were for. On hearing the explanation he stood us several enormous rounds of drinks and we spent a respectful and fascinating evening swapping war stories with colleagues and strangers from all over Europe. The only people who didn’t seem able to move on were the Russians. Lovely people, but just could not understand how an Englishman can sit down with a German and drink beer with him “after what they did to you in the war” (and these were youngsters in their 20s, not grizzled veterans) Perhaps they work for FIFA now?

  13. “Most people wearing poppies now are virtue-signaling and it’s almost compulsory.”

    It’s not virtue-signalling, it’s just pretty much compulsory if you’re not a cunt. It’s a quid, there’s no-one in this country who can’t afford that, and it’s a bit of basic respect to the casualties of war (of all nations), everyone can do that. Why the hell wouldn’t you?

  14. Don’t really know much about soccer; but isn’t the answer just a couple of briefcases filled with used, unmarked banknotes delivered to FIFA’s HQ?

  15. Why the hell wouldn’t you?

    Because where I live the money doesn’t go to veterans. It goes to the RSA, which used to represent veterans. Now is prone to poking its nose into political issues where it should not and barely is interested in actual veterans.

    I don’t give the RSA money directly. And I won’t be conned into giving it to them via poppies. Giving money to them is not giving respect to victims of war — I go to the cenotaph if I want to do that.


  16. I dropped my money in the tin when I went to get a haircut and was asked why I didn’t take a poppy.

    I’ve got a range of the metal ones, including ones I’ve worn in war zones, and boxes of the paper ones, because I do troop inspections before the local Remembrance Parade. I do ‘t need any more!

  17. Pingback: Behold the power of this blog – Fuck Fifa | Tim Worstall

  18. @ Dave

    I always put money in the tin, but stopped wearing a poppy years ago because I see it as an empty gesture. It was Tony Blair wearing his around the time he was sending my brother to Iraq that did it.

    I expect some veterans get a deserved bout of pride from seeing how many ordinary folk wear the poppy. That’s a real benefit. But, for me, not enough of one. I will be charitable, but as invisibly as possible.

  19. “There are times in life when you really shouldn’t ask permission.”

    Never ask ‘May I?’ unless you’re happy to receive the answer ‘No’.

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