Several Bundesliga clubs have announced they will light up their stadiums with rainbow colours during the Euro 2020 clash between Germany and Hungary after UEFA denied a request from the Munich mayor to light up the Allianz Arena.
Barcelona’s Antoine Griezmann and Gerard Pique as well as Arsenal’s Katie McCabe have also expressed their support for lighting up the stadium on social media.
Chelsea and Denmark star Pernille Harder also posted a picture of the UEFA statement on Instagram and captioned it: “Equal game?”
Munich mayor Dieter Reiter had said he wanted to light up the stadium in the colours in protest against a new law in Hungary that bans the dissemination of content in schools deemed to promote homosexuality and gender change but UEFA denied the request, saying it was a “political” statement.
— Antoine Griezmann (@AntoGriezmann) June 22, 2021
Wolfsburg, Hertha Berlin, Eintracht Frankfurt and Cologne have all announced they will display rainbow colours during the game in support of the LGBT community.
Barcelona also posted a picture of their crest with a rainbow flag in the background and captioned it: “Pride and respect.”
Bayern president Herbert Hainer released a statement on Tuesday which said the club stood for tolerance.
— VfL Wolfsburg (@VfL_Wolfsburg) June 22, 2021
“We would have liked it of the Allianz Arena could have been lit in rainbow colours on Wednesday,” he said in a statement posted on Twitter.
“Open-mindedness and tolerance are fundamental values that our society and FC Bayern stand for. That’s why FC Bayern has lit up its stadium in the colours of diversity, for example on Christopher street day, for several years.”
UEFA had suggested that alternative dates could be used for the gesture during the tournament, such as Christopher Street Day which commemorates the gay community’s Stonewall uprising in New York in 1969.
Former Germany midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger — who came out as gay after he retired in 2014 — also called on UEFA to change their decision.
Dear @EURO2020, don’t be offended by the 🌈. Think about those who still get discriminated. They need support. Your support, too!
— Thomas Hitzlsperger (@ThomasHitz) June 22, 2021
“Dear @EURO2020 , don’t be offended by the [rainbow]. Think about those who still get discriminated. They need support. Your support, too,” he tweeted.
The decision by UEFA to not allow the Allianz Arena to display the rainbow flag comes two days after UEFA said Germany captain Manuel Neuer and the German Football Association (DFB) would not face any disciplinary action for wearing a rainbow armband during the tournament.
Neuer, 35, wore the armband against France and Portugal, to show the DFB’s support for the LGBTQ+ community during Pride Month.
UEFA were investigating whether this contravened their rules over athletes not being permitted to make political statements. But UEFA said Sunday in a statement Neuer was “promoting a good cause” and opted against pursuing any further action.
Hungary are still under investigation by the governing body over “potential discriminatory incidents” during their games against Portugal and France at Budapest’s Puskas Arena.
During Hungary’s opening match against Portugal on Tuesday, images on social media showed banners with “Anti-LMBTQ” on them — the Hungarian abbreviation for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer.