The 35-year-old German goalkeeper has been flaunting the rainbow armband before June 11, when the Euro 2020 kicked off across 12 countries in Europe. Manuel Neuer was first spotted wearing the rainbow armband on June 7, 2021, during a friendly match between Germany and Latvia which his team won 7-1.
When the Euro 2020 kicked off and Germany played their opening Group match which was against France on June 15, the goalkeeper also wore the rainbow armband. The match ended 1-0.
On Saturday, June 19, Manuel Neuer stepped on the pitch to represent Germany against Portugal wearing the rainbow armband even though UEFA had started investigating the Bayern Munich goalkeeper over his decision to use the armband.
Before UEFA started its investigation into the goalkeeper’s decision to use the armband, it was revealed that Manuel Neuer is wearing the armband in solidarity with the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) movement and the Pride Month.
Pride Month is celebrated in June of every year in honor of the June 1969 Stonewall riots in which patrons and supporters of the Stonewall Inn in New York City staged an uprising to resist the police harassment and persecution to which LGBT Americans were subjected to.
The uprising is believed to be the beginning of a movement to outlaw discriminatory laws and practices against LGBT Americans. It is celebrated with pride parades, picnics, parties, workshops, symposia, and concerts.
Hence, UEFA initially tried to investigate whether Manuel Neuer’s decision to wear the rainbow armband has any political undertone. But the football governing body has stopped the investigation which could mean that the body has given the German captain the go-ahead to use the armband.
“UEFA have today shared with the DFB that they have stopped the review of the rainbow captain’s armband worn by
@Manuel_Neuer,” Germany’s football team said via a tweet.
“In a letter, the armband has been assessed as a team symbol for diversity and thus for a ‘good cause.'”
UEFA have today shared with the DFB that they have stopped the review of the rainbow captain's armband worn by @Manuel_Neuer.— Germany (@DFB_Team_EN) June 20, 2021
In a letter, the armband has been assessed as a team symbol for diversity and thus for a 'good cause.' #EURO2020 #GER pic.twitter.com/HFiAAQ6F5D
Hence, Neuer is expected to flaunt the armband even more on Wednesday, June 23, when Germany face Hungary in their last game of the group stage. The match is scheduled to kick off at 20:00.
According to reports, the German FA is planning to lit up the Allianz Arena in Munich, Germany, where Germany will play their last group match, with rainbow colors in solidarity with the LGBT community.
Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter confirmed on Sunday that the city would write to UEFA to grant the city permission to do so.
At the time of publishing this report, it has not been confirmed whether UEFA has permitted the city to do so but the possibility of that happening is very high.