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Feyenoord captain Orkun Kokcu refuses to wear rainbow armband

Marcus Chan

Published 
| Last updated 

Feyenoord captain Orkun Kokcu refuses to wear rainbow armband

Feyenoord captain Orkun Kokcu has decided not to wear the rainbow armband for his side’s Eredivisie match against AZ Alkmaar on Sunday afternoon. 

Ahead of the two team’s clash, Feyenoord tweeted a personal explanation from Kokcu regarding his refusal to wear the armband. 

Kokcu said: “I have decided not to wear the rainbow captain's armband this round. 

“I think it's important to emphasise that I respect everyone regardless of religion, background or preference. I believe that everyone is free to do what they want or feel. I fully understand the importance of this action, but because of my religious beliefs, I don't feel the right person to support this. 

“That's why I don't feel comfortable wearing this captain's armband. I can imagine some people are disappointed with this. That is absolutely not my intention, although I realise that I may not immediately be able to take away that feeling with these words. But I hope that my choice for religious reasons will also be respected.” 

As a result, the captain’s armband will instead be worn by Austrian centre-back, Gernot Trauner. 

The rainbow armband is worn to raise awareness and support for the LGBTQ+ community, ahead of next month’s World Cup, England captain Harry Kane is set to wear a OneLove armband when he leads the Three Lions out in Qatar. 

Despite FIFA not giving their permission yet, the FA are determined for Kane to wear the armband, even if they face potential fines. 

The OneLove armband is used to promote diversity, inclusion and anti-discrimination, in Qatar, same-sex relationships and the promotion of same-sex relationships are criminalised. 

Kane spoke about the OneLove campaign last month. He said: “I am honoured to join my fellow national team captains in supporting the important OneLove campaign.

“As captains, we may all be competing against each other on the pitch, but we stand together against all forms of discrimination. This is even more relevant at a time when division is common in society.” 

The OneLove campaign was launched by the Netherlands prior to Euro 2020. 

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Feyenoord, Eredivisie

Marcus Chan
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