Gary Lineker mocks FIFA chief Gianni Infantino over One Love armband farce during BBC coverage of England vs Iran | The Sun

Gary Lineker mocks FIFA chief Gianni Infantino over One Love armband farce during BBC coverage of England vs Iran | The Sun

GARY Lineker has mocked FIFA chief Gianni Infantino's bizarre speech following the World Cup One Love armband farce.

It came after England joined six other nations in pulling out of using the rainbow symbol to show support for the LGBTQ+ community worldwide.

Infantino was widely mocked after giving an outlandish speech amid controversy in the lead up to the tournament.

The FIFA boss told a stunned room of international reporters the day before the competition: “Today I feel Qatari. Today I feel Arab. Today I feel African. Today I feel gay. Today I feel disabled. Today I feel a migrant worker."

But Lineker channelled Infantino's bizarre speech as he opened the BBC's coverage of England's first game against Iran.

"Gianni Infantino obviously not feeling armbands today,” he said.

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He also slammed the tournament's rocky start, condemning the armband U-turn as "another day, another controversy".

Following Qatar's opening day loss to Ecuador, Lineker again linked to the tournament's troubles, saying it had been "a difficult start for the host nation in every sense".

It comes after today's last minute backtrack saw Harry Kane stopped from wearing the One Love armband for England's World Cup opener.

The decision was made to prevent Kane from wearing the armband following warnings he would be booked if he did.

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A joint statement from England, Wales, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Switzerland and Denmark said they changed their decision in the face of "sporting sanctions if our captains wear the armbands".

"As national federations, we can't put our players in a position where they could face sporting sanctions including bookings, so we have asked the captains not to attempt to wear the armbands in FIFA World Cup games,"they continued.

While insisting they were prepared to pay fines for the players wearing the armbands, the threat of bookings and even suspensions forced their hand.

The statement added: "We are very frustrated by the FIFA decision which we believe is unprecedented.

"We wrote to FIFA in September informing them of our wish to wear the One Love armband to actively support inclusion in football, and had no response.

"Our players and coaches are disappointed – they are strong supporters of inclusion and will show support in other ways."

Kane will wear the official FIFA anti-discrimination armband instead, the FA has confirmed.

The decision comes after France skipper Hugo Lloris decided he would not wear the One Love armband in Qatar.

The captains of England, Wales, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Switzerland and Holland were all keen to make a statement before coming under pressure from FIFA.

But Spurs keeper Lloris was never planning to join in the protests and said: “FIFA is organising this competition and it’s up to them to put the regulations in place.

“As players we are here to play football and represent our teams as best as we can on the sporting front.

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“I am a player at this competition and I would prefer to stay in my box.

“There are different causes that should be supported and these movements are commendable, but it’s up to FIFA to take these decisions.”

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