FIFA’s Chief of Global Football Development Arsene Wenger suggests Germany’s ‘political demonstrations’ over the One Love armband led to Hansi Flick’s side suffering an early exit at the World Cup
Arsene Wenger has claimed that Germany’s early exit from the World Cup was partly owing to their ‘political demonstrations’.
Germany crashed out of the tournament in the group stages having lost to Japan, drawn with Spain and beaten Costa Rica.
Prior to the game against Japan, Hansi Flick’s team protested against FIFA’s ban of the One Love armband by covering their mouths in their team photo. They also warmed up wearing clothing including rainbow coloured stripes.
Arsene Wenger suggested Germany’s protest contributed to their defeat to Japan
Wenger stated that teams who didn’t focus on political demonstrations fared better in their first game
Germany were one of the nations that had been planning to wear the One Love armband to show support for the LGBTQ+ community as homosexuality is illegal in Qatar.
However, FIFA warned that captains who wore the armband could end up receiving a yellow card.
Wenger, FIFA’s Chief of Global Football Development, suggested that Germany’s protest contributed towards them losing to Japan.
Germany suffered a shock defeat against Japan and ultimately failed to get out of the group
Former Arsenal manager Wenger said: ‘You know when you go to a World Cup, you know you can’t lose the first game. The teams who have the experience to perform in tournaments like France and England played well in the first game.
‘The teams who were mentally ready, with a mindset to focus on competition, and not the political demonstrations.’
England had also been planning to wear the One Love armband. Wenger commented that none of the big countries have been able to show consistency so far.
He said: ‘For the teams that have not been consistent visually, England is one of them. England was been absolutely outstanding in the first game, they struggled in the second game against the States and then they have back when needed to give a convincing performance against Wales.
‘There have been big ups and downs. None of the big countries has been so disappointing.’
Germany took the lead against Japan through a penalty from Ilkay Gundogan, but goals from Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano gave Hajime Moriyasu’s team a shock victory.