England discuss war veterans poppy tribute with FIFA


London (AFP)

England are negotiating with FIFA over whether they can wear a poppy tribute to war veterans when they play Scotland on Armistice Day on November 11, officials said.

The Sun newspaper said FIFA had refused to let England and Scotland display poppies on their shirts during the game because it would be a political statement.

However a FIFA spokesperson told AFP: "Fifa is in touch with the English FA on this matter."

The English Football Association said: "We are working closely with the Royal British Legion once again this year to honour and remember the sacrifices made by those serving in the armed forces.

"In recent weeks, the FA has led remembrance discussions with FIFA to allow the England team to show its support for the poppy appeal during the World Cup qualifier with Scotland."

England and Scotland are in the same group aiming to qualify for the 2018 World Cup finals. But the Wembley game comes on a particularly emotive date.

November 11 is the day world allies signed an armistice with Germany to end World War I in 1918. In Britain it is used as the day to remember all war dead.

In 2011, FIFA agreed to let England wear a poppy symbol on black armbands when they played Spain in a friendly.

A Sun headline condemned "cold-blooded FIFA chiefs" for refusing to allow a shirt tribute this time.