Denmark become latest team to focus attention on Qatar
HERNING, Denmark (AP):
Denmark became the latest European football team yesterday to use World Cup qualifying games to direct attention to workers' rights in Qatar, which host the 2022 tournament.
Denmark players wore red T-shirts with the slogan 'Football supports change' for the customary team photo before kicking off against Moldova. The Danes won 8-0 to extend a strong start leading their Group F in qualifying to play in Qatar.
The Danish football federation said the shirts would be signed and auctioned to raise money for projects with Amnesty International that help migrant workers in Qatar.
Denmark follow the Netherlands team on Saturday which wore T-shirts with the same slogan.
HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUES
Norway and Germany players had days earlier also worn T-shirts pre-game to draw attention to human rights issues in Qatar. The Norwegian national team made a point about rights again ahead of its game against Turkey on Saturday.
Since winning the World Cup hosting vote in 2010, Qatar has faced scrutiny for living and working conditions of migrant workers helping to build stadiums, transport and other construction projects ahead of the tournament. It starts in November next year.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino defended Qatar this month saying that becoming the World Cup host had accelerated social progress in the Emirates.
Though FIFA's disciplinary code states players and federations could face disciplinary action in cases of "using a sports event for demonstrations of a non-sporting nature," it said after the first Norway protest that no investigation would be opened.