Former England international Alex Scott has been labelled a “legend” after she was spotted supporting LGBTQ+ people when she wore a OneLove armband while reporting from pitch-side during England’s opening match of the World Cup against Iran. . This comes just mere hours since England and Wales, and other European countries confirmed they would no longer wear the armband.
Scott, who turned out for England 140 times, has been a critic of Qatar’s human rights record and treatment of LGBTQ+ people in the build-up to the World Cup.
“Alex Scott you legend,” tweeted football journalist, Ali Tweedale.
“I burst into tears when I saw this. So much respect for,” said one man watching the coverage.
“FIFA may have banned England from wearing a Pride Armband on field at the World Cup, but English analyst Alex Scott is wearing it on the sideline as she broadcasts to the Nation. Positivity 1 Dystopia 0,” tweeted podcaster Roger Bennett.
In a joint statement with the Welsh FA and other European football associations, the English FA said:"FIFA has been very clear that it will impose sporting sanctions if our captains wear the armbands on the field of play. 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," the joint statement from the Football Associations of England, Wales, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, The Netherlands and Switzerland read.
"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”.
In the build up to England’s group B opener, the programme was introduced by presenter Gary Lineker, with pundits Alan Shearer, Rio Ferdinand and Micah Richards in the studio. The coverage then cut to pitch-side to Kelly Somers and Scott, where she could be seen wearing the armband.
The decision made by the authorities, telling teams to not wear the armband would have disappointed England captain Harry Kane, who was eager to wear it. Prior to the decision, he said “We’ve made it clear as a team and a staff and organisation that we want to wear the armband. I know the FA are talking to Fifa at the moment and I’m sure by game time tomorrow they will have their decision. I think we’ve made it clear that we want to wear it.”
Former Real Madrid star Gareth Bale also planned to wear the OneLove armband, as his Wales squad appear at their first World Cup in 64 years. As they take to the field against the United States, he will not be wearing it.