December 9 2013 Latest news:
By James Cunliffe
Friday, September 20, 2013
Arsene Wenger will allow his Arsenal players to wear the rainbow laces in this weekend’s clash with Stoke, despite some Premier League clubs, including rivals Tottenham, reacting with disappointment at the lack of consultation about the campaign.
The gay rights charity Stonewall has linked up with betting firm Paddy Power to send laces to all 92 professional clubs in England, plus the 42 in Scotland.
Their hope is that the players will wear the laces as part of the ‘Right Behind Gay Footballers’ campaign, but the Premier League was not consulted about the initiative.
Tottenham and Chelsea will not take part, nor will Manchester United, Sunderland, Norwich and Southampton.
Fulham too are irked by the lack of discussion but will allow their players to wear them at their discretion.
QPR midfielder Joey Barton wore the laces in Wednesday’s 0-0 draw with Brighton and Arsenal manager Wenger has today welcomed the initiative.
He said: “I am personally against [homophobia], for me that is linked with racism, every single week you could find a reason to fight against it,” he said.
“It’s a kind of racism and that should all be included in the fight against racism.
“In our club everybody is free to have his own opinion of these kind of things.”