The United States men’s national soccer team (USMNT) redesigned its crest with gay pride rainbow stripes ahead of the World Cup in Qatar in an effort to show solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community.
Earlier this year, USMNT announced a partnership with the You Can Play Project for the fourth consecutive year to support LGBTQ+.
“As part of its “One Nation” social responsibility platform to promote diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB), U.S. Soccer, with support from Volkswagen, will partner with the You Can Play Project for the fourth consecutive year to celebrate LGBTQ+ Pride month during its friendly matches in June. The You Can Play Project is an organization dedicated to ensuring equality, respect and safety for all athletes, coaches and fans no matter their sexual orientation and/or gender identity.”
“U.S. Soccer is proud to support all fans, players, and employees to share their voices during LGBTQ+ Pride Month and create a more diverse and inclusive environment. We will continue in our support for the LGBTQ+ community in our belief that a diverse and inclusive environment enables our fans, players, and employees to thrive and make a real impact on people across the world.”
At the World Cup in Qatar, the U.S. men’s national team made headlines by redesigning their crest to include the rainbow flag.
This is a bold move from the US team despite the strict law in Qatar regarding LGBTQ+ people.
Qatar criminalizes same-sex sexual activity between men and between women. Punishment can be as severe as the death penalty by stoning.
NEW – No longer just red stripes. United States redesigns its crest with rainbow colors ahead of World Cup in Qatar.
— Disclose.tv (@disclosetv) November 14, 2022
Daily Mail reported:
The tournament, which starts on Sunday and sees the US play their opener against Wales on Monday, has been hugely controversial in its build-up, given Qatar’s human rights record and attitude to homosexuality.
As recently as this month, a Qatar World Cup ambassador told a German TV broadcaster that homosexuality was ‘damage to the mind’, and it remains illegal to be gay in the conservative Muslim country.
The USMNT appear to have made an immediate stand on their arrival in Doha, though, by changing the usual red stripes on their crest to a rainbow.
The US national team arrived at their Doha base at the end of last week, with some players joining at the weekend following their final club matches.
Among the later arrivals was Christian Pulisic, who featured for Chelsea away at Newcastle on Saturday evening, before heading out to the tournament.
Gregg Berhalter’s side face Wales in their opening Group B match, before huge clashes against England and then Iran as they bid to qualify for the knockout stages.