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Eden Hazard takes aim at Germany over pre-match gesture

Eden Hazard Germany

He’s not having it…

Eden Hazard has taken aim at Germany over the pre-match gesture they made before their defeat to Japan on Wednesday afternoon.

Ahead of the World Cup, Germany were one of seven European nations whose captains were due to wear OneLove “rainbow” armbands in solidarity with the LGBTQI+ community.

However, with homosexuality illegal in Qatar, where the World Cup is being held, a last-minute u-turn saw Fifa threaten the captains with a yellow card if any of them took to the pitch wearing the armband.

Instead, all 11 starting players opted to cover their mouths for the pre-match photo at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha.

It was a powerful message that got people talking, but what dominated the headlines after the game was Japan’s shocking 2-1 comeback win.

Discussing the gesture, Germany manager Hansi Flick said: “It was a sign, a message that we wanted to send out. We wanted to convey the message that FIFA is silencing us.”

Speaking on Wednesday night, Belgium winger Hazard said that Germany have focused on football instead of trying to send a “political message”.

Eden Hazard on Germany pre-match gesture

He said: “Afterwards they lost the match. They would have done better not to do it and to win.

“We are here to play football, I am not here to send a political message, people are better placed for that. We want to be focused on football.

“I’m not comfortable talking about it because I’m here to play football. We were banned for a bit… I didn’t want to start the match with a yellow card, it would have been annoying for the rest of the tournament.”

Hazard spoke after his side got extremely lucky to come out from their game against Canada with three points

Hazard himself was taken off after 60 minutes, with the Real Madrid player still struggling to get back to full fitness.

Read next: Kevin De Bruyne gives interesting take on Man of the Match award vs Canada

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