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Fifa has become charged with bifold standards afterwards controversially banning poppies from getting shown on players’ football shirts

FIFA was at the centre of a new absurdity endure night as it appear a belated analysis into Irish football shirts appearance the centenary of the Easter Rising.

The delving comes added than seven months afterwards the kit was beat by the Republic of Ireland aggregation in a affable match.

It is the latest altercation for the apple football administering body, which clashed with the England and Scotland FAs over the appropriate to abrasion a poppy during a bout on Armistice Day.


While Fifa disqualified the annual is a ‘political symbol’, it appeared to discount the cheap football shirts beat by Irish players adjoin Switzerland on March 25.

Critics accused the Zurich-based football organisation of bifold standards. Fifa is now because ‘retrospective’ activity adjoin the Republic of Ireland’s Football Association for cutting the jersey – which acclaimed the 1916 action for Irish ability in which 485 absent their lives.

The bold was a pre-Euro 2016 countdown in which the Ireland aggregation sported their acceptable blooming shirts with the words ‘Eire Ireland 1916-2016’ beneath the all-embracing crest. A Fifa agent said its antidotal board is ‘evaluating the matter’ even admitting the bout was a affable and did not appear beneath its stricter regulations administering clothing.

The game’s laws accompaniment that kit should not backpack any ‘commercial, political or religious messages’ and Fifa warned both England and Scotland they will face sanctions if players abrasion poppies if they accommodated next week.

In the accomplished the Republic has beat sponsored shirts – address the names of the Three adaptable buzz arrangement and car behemothic Opel – but alone in friendlies, which does not abjure Fifa rules.

Tory MP Damian Collins, administrator of the Commons culture, media and action committee, accent the affair of bifold standards over the Easter Rising branding.


He told BBC Radio 5: ‘I achievement accepted faculty prevails. Fifa has austere rules banning political, religious or bartering symbols from football shirts sale.

‘I anticipate it is calumniating to humans in this country to say a poppy is one of those array of symbols.

‘Someone has aggregate with me on amusing media an Ireland football shirt that has a appropriate adornment on appearance the centenary of the Easter Rising. Fifa acquiesce that, so I anticipate humans will acquisition it amazing that the poppy’s not allowed.’

The MP after added: ‘It appears to be an actually archetypal archetype of charity getting apparent to added countries.’ The accommodation to acquiesce players to mark 100 years back the action for Irish ability acquired altercation a part of some Unionists in Northern Ireland if it was appear by the Football Association of Ireland. The FAI beneath to animadversion on the shirt issue.

England and Scotland Football Associations say players will baffle Fifa by cutting atramentous armbands announcement poppies if they accommodated for their Armistice Day Apple Cup qualifier on November 11. Fifa has consistently said it believes the red annual has ‘political’ connotations.

But the Royal British Legion apprenticed Fifa ‘in the arch terms’ to amend its ban, saying: ‘The red poppy is a attribute of afterthought and achievement for a peaceful future. It has no political, religious or bartering meaning.’

In an accessible letter to football chiefs, the Legion’s administrator accepted Charles Byrne added: ‘This baby red annual that grew on the devastated battlefields of the First Apple War is a austere admonition of the amount of war and the amount of peace.’

Describing the red poppy as an ‘international attribute about the world’, he added: ‘We can see no acumen why this simple attribute cannot be beat by players at all-embracing football matches should they accept to.’


Manchester United have regained their status as the world’s most popular football club by sales of official replica shirts according to authoritative new research.

The Old Trafford club sold an average of 1.75m shirts per year in the five-season period from 2011-12 to 2015-16 inclusive.

That puts them in the No1 spot in European football – and the world. The data has been compiled by industry insider Dr Peter Rohlmann and his team at the consulting bureau, PR Marketing, and is published for the first time by Sportingintelligence today.

Real Madrid are No2 in the list, averaging 1.65m shirts per year in the period under review ahead of Barcelona in third, Bayern Munich in fourth and Chelsea in fifth.


There is major financial significance in being able to shift huge amounts of official merchandise. The more gear a club can sell, the more money a manufacturer will pay to be an official kit supplier.

Chelsea confirmed their new £900m, 15-year deal with Nike last week, for example, equating to a contract worth £60m a year. United have a deal with adidas worth £75m a year, while the Spanish giants of Real and Barca both have new deals worth around £100m a year. That quartet beat everyone else by some distance.

Dr Rohlmann is a veteran analyst who has authored a number of in-depth studies into kit supply deals and T shirts sales by Europe’s elite clubs. This website carried an earlier study for the 5-year period 2007 to 2012 in October 2012 here.

By 2014, Real Madrid’s growth had edged just ahead of United’s, putting Real into the No1 spot as both clubs sold more each year, but United’s growth has taken a spurt and they are back at the top in the latest analysis. Just four clubs have had annual average sales of more than one million shirts per year over a five-year period.

It is worth noting however:

a: Dr Rohlmann counts sales of official genuine replica club shirts. Counterfeits and copies are not part of these totals. Methodology is not always clear in other studies.

b: A five-year period of data is seen as vital to overall accuracy as most clubs’ sales will ebb and flow dependent on success and signings, although individual players are often not as influential in sales as some claim.

c: While the replica shirt is the most obvious and visible piece of merchandise that a manufacturer will monetise from their commercial relationship with a club, there will typically be many dozens of other lines of clothing and apparel where money is made as part of the same contract. So, for example, Adidas selling almost 2 million Manchester United football shirts in a year at around £50 each is far from the whole story of that company’s revenue from United. Millions of other items from shorts and socks to hats, bags, training gear, tops, coats and other accessories – often even more expensive than a shirt – are also shifted annually.

Aside from United moving back to the top spot, the other major movers in recent years have been Bayern Munich, PSG, Dortmund and Manchester City moving up the shirt sales rankings as they have returned to global prominence or gained it for the first time. The Italian giants of Milan and Inter are among the fallers as their fortunes have waned.

Chelsea football shirts sale Arsenal and Tottenham but Manchester United tops charts


Chelsea have finished top of the league for London clubs in football shirt sales – shipping almost 900,000 a season.

The Blues have been the capital’s most successful club in the past decade and that silverware has seen them pip rivals Arsenal.

Since 2011 Chelsea have sold an average of 899,000 shirts a year, while the Gunners sold 835,000, according to new research by industry analyst Dr Peter Rohlmann.

Those figures put the London clubs as the fifth and seventh most successful across Europe.

Tottenham are way back in 15th, with 268,000 shirt sales per year.

But all three pale into comparison with Manchester United, who sold 1.75m, and Real Madrid, who sold 1.65m, between 2011 and 2016.

FA bandy abroad £25,000 account of t-shirts and cards with Sam Allardyce quotes


The Football Association accept had to bin 4,000 t-shirts they had planned to accord to admirers for England’s next bold at home to Malta because they affection a Sam Allardyce quote.

Organisers had planned to accomplish a admirable action as the 61-year-old able for his aboriginal bold at Wembley by handing out shirts printed with the byword ‘The adventure starts with us all affairs together’ – a adduce from Allardyce’s aboriginal day in the job.

He said at the time: “I can about-face things about appealing bound and get amidst teams to try to actualize a acknowledged adventure and a acknowledged adventure starts with all of us affairs together.”

A army circuitous of coloured cards that was aswell planned for the break has now aswell been scrapped, with both bootless gestures costing the FA about £25,000.

There was added embarrassment for the FA on Thursday if it was appear all associates of Allardyce’s aboriginal band that won in Slovakia 1-0 were beatific a postcard which read: “Our adventure has just begun. Looking advanced to seeing you soon.”

The cards were beatific out afore the above Sunderland bang-up accommodated from his column as England administrator afterward bi-weekly allegations he was advising affected businessmen on how to get about FA alteration rules on third-party ownership.

Shkodran Mustafi in the market to prove he’s really worth the wait after finally completing £35m Arsenal transfer

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Arsenal completed the £35m signing of the above Valencia centre-back on Tuesday, over a ages afterwards they had aboriginal been affected into the bazaar by a austere abrasion to club captain Per Mertesacker, who will be bare until 2017.

Arsene Wenger had initially hoped to defended Mustafi, who was at Everton as a youngster, for about £20m but has been affected to pay the third-highest fee anytime spent on a centre-back to defended the German World Cup winner.

Without an accomplished centre-back to accomplice Laurent Koscielny, who instead shepherded the active Rob Holding through the endure two matches, Arsenal alone 5 credibility to abalienate aboriginal arena in the appellation chase to Chelsea and the Manchester sides. But Mustafi promised his new supporters he will be account the wait.

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“I saw a lot of pictures traveling about on Twitter, on Instagram and on Facebook,” he told the club website. “Some of them fabricated me beam as well. I apperceive that for humans who watch football and cheap football shirts, cat-and-mouse for new signings isn’t simple sometimes.

“All the signings apperceive there are a lot of things traveling on in the transfer, so you accept to accomplish abiding you do aggregate acceptable to accept a acceptable start. That’s what we did. We approved to yield our time, do aggregate the best way you can do it and again alpha this adventure actuality correctly.

“I’ve been arena in altered countries. I’m alone 24 but I’ve played in Italy, in Germany and in football shirts UK, area I had some time with Everton. Again I played in Spain as well, so I’ve approved absolutely to yield some of the appearance of the altered countries.

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“Right now I would say that I’m absolutely an advancing player. I go into everything, that’s what I learnt in England. But on the added side, I’m absolutely tactical. I try to apprehend the game, like you do in Italy. With the ball, I try to play out and adore accepting the football shirts sale, not just giving it abroad as anon as you get it.”

Mustafi will not accompany up with his new team-mates until afterwards the all-embracing break. He is currently with the German civic team.

Indeed the bound time Mustafi will accept to plan with his new team-mates may animate Wenger to abide with Holding alongside Koscielny afterwards the 20-year-old’s absorbing performances adjoin Leicester and Watford.

Wenger told Standard Sport on Saturday: “It’s important that a amateur who comes from Bolton, comes to a club area he concedes four goals in the aboriginal bold at home, he has to play beneath huge burden at Leicester and today he performs the way he does.

“I anticipate it’s not simple and it shows some abundant abeyant and I am assertive that he will accord a cheap football shirts to all the centre backs.”