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Denmark Protest 2022 World Cup Kits Take Center Stage

By Jeff Stinger

Denmark’s national soccer team partner, Hummel, comes out with a powerful statement with its new kits for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The iconic manufacturer unveiled the jerseys to the world in September with the Danes set to wear three variations of subtle designs. Hummel also revealed that they made efforts to diminish the visual cues as “a protest against Qatar and its human rights record.”

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The brains behind the idea

Hummel pointed out across various social media platforms that the branding on the strips, reminiscent of their classic chevrons, wasn’t as pronounced as before. This allows them to dial down its visibility in the upcoming competition. Having renowned forward and +15,000 top goalscorer sleeper Christian Eriksen sport the new kit makes their campaign even more visible across the globe.

The Danish sportswear manufacturer explained: “With the Danish national team’s new jerseys, we wanted to send a dual message. They are not only inspired by Euro 92, paying tribute to Denmark’s greatest football success, but also a protest against Qatar and its human rights record.

“That’s why we’ve toned down all the details for Denmark’s new World Cup jerseys, including our logo and iconic chevrons. We don’t wish to be visible during a tournament that has cost thousands of people their lives.

“We support the Danish national team all the way, but that isn’t the same as supporting Qatar as a host nation.

“We believe that sport should bring people together. And when it doesn’t, we want to make a statement.”

2022 FIFA World Cup controversies

FIFA’s decision to award Qatar hosting of the 2022 edition received backlash from multiple circles, leading to some suggestions between fans, former players, and authorities. Others pushed that the 22nd World Cup should be boycotted.

That being said, it’s not surprising to see brands take a stand against the issues. Hummel conveys their approach through Denmark’s kits and one that has been received well by many. Furthermore, the impact of the new designs grabbed the attention of Qatar’s Supreme Committee.

According to the statement: “Since winning the right to host the FIFA World Cup, the SC has worked diligently alongside the Qatari government to ensure that the tournament delivers a lasting social legacy.

“For that reason, we dispute Hummel’s claim that this tournament has cost thousands of people their lives. Furthermore, we whole-heartedly reject the trivialising our genuine commitment to protect the health and safety of the 30,000 workers who built FIFA World Cup™️ stadiums and other tournament projects.

“That same commitment now extends to 150,000 workers across various tournament services and 40,000 workers in the hospitality sector.

“The onus should always be on countries to do more to protect the rights of peoples all over the world, including in Denmark. The SC’s work is recognised by numerous entities within the international human rights community as a model that has accelerated progress and improved lives. Qatar’s reforms are acknowledged by the ILO and ITUC as a benchmark in the region. Like every country, progress on these issues is a journey without a finish line, and Qatar is committed to that journey.

“We urge the DBU to accurately convey the outcome of their extensive communication and work with the SC, and to ensure that this is accurately communicated to their partners at Hummel.”

The Danish sportswear manufacturers did send their message and did it well. With the help of +260 favorites to win Group D, the protest made a significant impact on influential names in the tournament’s organization and it’s only a matter of time before further action follows suit.

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