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Why players in Italy are BANNED from wearing the No.88 shirt

Why players in Italy are BANNED from wearing the No.88 shirt

Italy has banned footballers from wearing the number 88.

Italy has BANNED footballers from wearing the No.88 shirt as part of a declaration to stop anti-Semitism.

Players in Serie A will no longer be able to sport the No.88 shirt from next season as part of a campaign to fight anti-Semitism.

It's part of a pledge to combat anti-Semitism across the country, with the number used by neo-Nazis to symbolise 'Heil Hitler'.

'H' is the eighth letter in the alphabet and references the 'Heil Hitler' salute.

Lazio's Toma Basic and Atalanta's Mario Pasalic are the current players in Italy that don the No.88 shirt.

Mario Pasalic in action for Atalanta. Image: Alamy
Mario Pasalic in action for Atalanta. Image: Alamy

The decision to ban the No.88 shirt was confirmed on Tuesday by FIGC (Italian FA) president Gabriele Gravina, who spoke of the united front to fight against anti-Semitism.

"The world of football is united in the fight against antisemitism and all forms of discrimination," said Gravina.

"With this declaration of intent, we reiterate once again that our sport must be increasingly inclusive and, at the same time, an extraordinary vehicle for positive messages.

"Thanks to its deepest values ​​and its exceptional communicative power, football offers itself as an instrument of civic conscience to educate in acceptance and respect. On these issues, we do not back down an inch, because the credibility of football, which is also hurt and damaged by discriminatory behaviour, has a direct impact on Italian society."

The officials signed a declaration of intent for the fight against anti-Semitism, which included several actions to combat racism following the issues last season.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Football, Italy, Serie A