Players in this summer’s World Cup in Brazil will be banned from displaying any messages on undershirts.
Players usually wear inscriptions on their shirts to lend support to a cause or make a statement and even though, taking off one’s shirt in celebration of a goal already attracts a yellow card, FIFA says that seem not be be deterrent enough and is now proposing a triple punishment for that offence.
The new rules come into force from June 1, saying players should not display any personal slogans at all on shirts they are wearing under their kit.
The decision was taken at a meeting of the International FA Board (IFAB), the game’s law-making body, in Zurich.
Overt slogans have long been banned by FIFA, but players often lift up their shirts after scoring to show other messages.
“From now on there can be no slogan or image whatsoever on undergarments even good-natured ones,” the FIFA secretary general Jérôme Valcke told a news conference after an IFAB meeting.
“This will apply from June 1and be in force for the World Cup.”
Valcke said in Zurich: “It is definitely decided that players must not have any slogan or statement, and we are making the decision that it will apply to the World Cup and it will be enforced from 1 June and not 1 July.”
Ghana players like Emmanuel Agyemang Badu wore ‘God is Great’ inscription on his undershirt during the 2009 Under-20 World Cup, Wakaso Mubarak was also punished when he wore ‘Allah is Great’ on his shirt at the 2013 African Cup of Nations tournament while Didier Drogba also wore ‘Thank You Madiba’ to show appreciation to the world and South African legend, Nelson Mandela when he died last December.