Kökcü just Feyenoord captain, but without OneLove band; Slot wears pin

Kökcü just Feyenoord captain, but without OneLove band; Slot wears pin
Orkun Kökcü

NOS Football

Orkun Kökcü will ‘just’ captain Feyenoord in Sunday’s match against Ajax. A OneLove action against racism and discrimination is scheduled this weekend, but the midfielder said Sunday that he will not wear the accompanying captain’s armband.

The 22-year-old footballer will put Feyenoord’s traditional green-and-white captain’s armband, which reads “respect for everyone,” on his arm this weekend.

Feyenoord does want to support the OneLove action. For example, coach Arne Slot is wearing a pin and a video was shot with reserve captain Gernot Trauner.

‘Created for other reasons’

This weekend Onelove campaign is being organized around the International Day Against Racism and Discrimination. Kökcü says he is behind the action, but thinks the special captain’s armband was “created for other reasons.”

Kokcü supports action against racism next weekend, but not with an armband

Therefore, he chooses to play with an alternative band on Sunday. “The text on our captain’s armband, which I will proudly wear again on Sunday, covers the load better for me and also suits me better,” Kökcü said on the Feyenoord site.

The OneLove action was also organized in October. Then a fuss arose because Kökcü and Excelsior captain Redouan El Yaakoubi refused to wear the band with the heart in rainbow colors.

The action in the fall was organized around Coming Out Day. At the time, Kökcü said he does not want to be a signboard of that. “I’m loyal to my faith,” he said. The captain’s armband was worn by Trauner at the time.

Own choice

KNVB director Marianne van Leeuwen said earlier that players can decide for themselves whether to participate in the action. “It’s not about who does and doesn’t participate, it’s about the message that there is no place for any form of discrimination. Not in soccer, not anywhere.”

A soccer federation spokesman added that it is someone’s right not to participate. “The goal is not for every captain to wear the band. But the more, the better.”

AZ midfielder Jordy Clasie with the OneLove captain’s armband, October last year

Kayleigh Williams