Barcelona, Juventus and Real Madrid have stated their intention to press on with the European Super League after a court protected them against UEFA disciplinary proceedings relating to the project's ill-fated launch earlier this year.

On Friday, the mercantile court in Madrid threw out UEFA's appeal against its ruling earlier this month that stated disciplinary proceedings concerned with the founding 12 Super League clubs must be scrapped.

The Spanish pair and Italian giants welcomed the decision against what they termed "UEFA threats" and condemned European football's governing body for its "monopolistic position" over its governance of the game in a joint statement.

The case will now be assessed by the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.

"FC Barcelona, Juventus, and Real Madrid CF welcome today's court's decision enforcing, with immediate effect, UEFA's obligation to unwind the actions taken against all European Super League founding clubs, including terminating the disciplinary proceedings against the undersigning three clubs and removing the penalties and restrictions imposed on the remaining nine founding clubs for them to avoid UEFA's disciplinary action," the statement read.

"The court backs the request made by the promoters of the European Super League, dismisses UEFA's appeal, and confirms its warning to UEFA that failure to comply with its ruling shall result in fines and potential criminal liability."

The statement continued: "Our aim is to keep developing the Super League project in a constructive and cooperative manner, always counting on all football stakeholders: fans, players, coaches, clubs, leagues, and national and international associations.

"We are aware that there are elements of our proposal that should be reviewed and, of course, can be improved through dialogue and consensus. We remain confident in the success of a project that will be always compliant with European Union laws."

The proposed Super League format guaranteed participation for its 12 founders but quickly prompted outrage across the footballing world in April.

With the Premier League clubs – Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal – pulling out, Milan, Inter and Atletico Madrid soon followed.

Those nine clubs each agreed to pay €15million in support of European grassroots football initiatives and cede five per cent of their revenues from UEFA club competitions in the forthcoming season after reconciliation talks with the governing body.

Barcelona, Juventus and Real Madrid did not stand down, prompting a UEFA investigation and the launch of disciplinary proceedings in May that were expected to yield harsher punishments.

Friday's ruling in the Spanish capital effectively renders all of those measures void. UEFA is yet to comment on the latest developments.

Hungary have been ordered to play their next two UEFA competition matches behind closed doors following an investigation into discriminatory behaviour by supporters at Euro 2020.

Budapest hosted four games of the tournament, which concludes on Sunday when England face Italy in the final at Wembley.

Hungary's 3-0 defeat to Portugal and 1-1 draw against France in Group F each took place at the Puskas Arena in front of packed crowds of over 60,000.

During the Portugal game, images of a banner among the home supporters in the stands reading "ANTI LMBTQ" – referring to the Hungarian language abbreviation for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer – circulated on social media. The matter was reported to UEFA by anti-discrimination group Fare.

Before the clash with France, some Hungary fans took part in a pre-match march in Budapest and unveiled a banner opposing the act of kneeling before matches, a peaceful anti-racism protest in which several teams participated.

Given the latter incident took place outside the stadium, it did not fall under UEFA's jurisdiction, but European football's governing body said it was investigating possible acts of discrimination inside the Puskas Arena from both matches.

And UEFA confirmed sanctions against the Hungarian Football Federation (MLSZ) on Friday in response to discriminatory acts at those contests and Hungary's 2-2 draw with Germany in Munich.

UEFA's Control Ethics and Disciplinary Body ruled that Hungary should play their next three UEFA competition matches behind closed doors, with the third suspended for a probationary period of two years.

The MLSZ has also been ordered to pay a €100,000 fine and to implement a directive to display UEFA's '#EqualGame' banner at UEFA competition matches where it serves as the host association.

Hungary do not play another UEFA competition fixture until the 2022-23 Nations League, which starts in June next year.

They are back in action in World Cup qualifying when they host England on September 2. The order to play behind closed doors does not apply to World Cup qualifiers, which fall under FIFA's jurisdiction.

Hungary are second in World Cup qualifying Group I with seven points from three games.

UEFA has charged Euro 2020 finalists England after Kasper Schmeichel had a laser pointer aimed at his face when facing Harry Kane's penalty at Wembley on Wednesday.

England were hit with three charges by the tournament organisers after supporters of Gareth Southgate's team overstepped the mark in the semi-final win over Denmark.

The 2-1 win after extra time at Wembley on Wednesday carried England through to their first major tournament final since the 1966 World Cup.

Amid jubilant scenes, however, there was cause for concern on UEFA's part.

 

Schmeichel managed to save Kane's spot-kick in the 104th minute, defying the laser distraction. He could not prevent the England captain blasting in on the rebound, however.

The England fans' booing of Denmark's national anthem was a distasteful moment, while UEFA has also taken issue with fireworks being set off at the ground.

In a statement, UEFA said: "Disciplinary proceedings have been opened following the UEFA Euro 2020 semi-final match between England and Denmark (2-1), played on July 7 at Wembley Stadium, London."

It listed the charges as: "Use of laser pointer by its supporters; disturbance caused by its supporters during the national anthem; lighting of fireworks by its supporters."

UEFA added: "The case will be dealt with by the UEFA control, ethics and disciplinary body in due course."

UEFA says it is "proud to wear the colours of the rainbow" amid controversy over the decision to reject Germany's request to light up the Allianz Arena for Wednesday's Euro 2020 clash with Hungary.

Mayor of Munich Dieter Reiter asked the European football governing body for permission to illuminate the stadium in rainbow colours in support of the LGBTQ+ community.

He made the request after Hungary last week passed a law that prohibits the sharing of content in schools that could be deemed to promote homosexuality and gender change.

However, UEFA proposed alternative dates for the ground to be lit up as the gesture was deemed to be of a political nature.

"Given the political context of this specific request – a message aiming at a decision taken by the Hungarian national parliament – UEFA must decline this request," a statement read on Tuesday.

Bayern Munich president Herbert Hainer expressed regret at the decision from the European governing body, while Reiter labelled it "shameful" and criticised the German Football Federation for failing to support the request.

But UEFA issued another statement on Wednesday to defend itself amid the widespread criticism, stressing its own commitment to fighting against any form of discrimination.

"Today, UEFA is proud to wear the colours of the rainbow," the statement read.

"It is a symbol that embodies our core values, promoting everything that we believe in – a more just and egalitarian society, tolerant of everyone, regardless of their background, belief or gender.

"Some people have interpreted UEFA's decision to turn down the city of Munich's request to illuminate the Munich stadium in rainbow colours for a EURO 2020 match as 'political'. 

"On the contrary, the request itself was political, linked to the Hungarian football team's presence in the stadium for this evening's match with Germany.

"For UEFA, the rainbow is not a political symbol, but a sign of our firm commitment to a more diverse and inclusive society."

UEFA last week opened an investigation into Manuel Neuer wearing a rainbow-coloured captain's armband in his side's opening two Euro 2020 games.

But the probe was halted after the governing body deemed it "a good cause".

UEFA has rejected a request for Germany to light up the Allianz Arena in rainbow colours for Wednesday's Euro 2020 clash with Hungary because of political reasons.

Mayor of Munich Dieter Reiter said on Sunday that he has asked UEFA for permission to illuminate the stadium in support of the LGBTQ+ community.

Reiter made the request after Hungary passed a law that prohibits the sharing of content in schools that could be deemed to promote homosexuality and gender change.

However, while UEFA understands the gesture, European football's governing body has proposed alternative dates for the stadium to be lit up, rather than on the day of the Hungary game.

"Racism, homophobia, sexism, and all forms of discrimination are a stain on our societies – and represent one of the biggest problems faced by the game today," read a UEFA statement on Tuesday.

"Discriminatory behaviour has marred both matches themselves and, outside the stadiums, the online discourse around the sport we love.

"However UEFA, through its statutes, is a politically and religiously neutral organisation. Given the political context of this specific request – a message aiming at a decision taken by the Hungarian national parliament – UEFA must decline this request.

"UEFA has nevertheless proposed to the city of Munich to illuminate the stadium with the rainbow colours on either 28 June – the Christopher Street Liberation Day – or between 3 and 9 July which is the Christopher Street Day week in Munich."

Christopher Street Day is an annual European LGBTQ+ celebration and demonstration held in various cities across Europe for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community.

UEFA last week opened an investigation into Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer wearing a rainbow-coloured captain's armband in his side's opening two Euro 2020 fixtures against France and Portugal.

But amid widespread criticism, the probe was halted after the governing body deemed it "a good cause".

UEFA insists there are no plans to move the Euro 2020 semi-finals and final away from Wembley.

England's national stadium is due to host five knockout matches, but UEFA confirmed last week there is a "contingency plan" in place should overseas supporters be forced to quarantine for 10 days in line with coronavirus protocols in the United Kingdom.

Cases of COVID-19 have been increasing in recent weeks in the UK, fuelled by the Delta variant first identified in India, with a further 10,633 positive tests on Monday.

Recent reports suggested UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin was prepared to move the semi-finals and final to Budapest, while Italian prime minister Mario Draghi has called for the prestige fixtures to be played elsewhere, with Rome touted as another alternative.

However, European football's governing body remains committed to staging the tournament's three biggest fixtures at Wembley.

"UEFA, the English FA and the English authorities are working closely together successfully to stage the semi-finals and final of Euro 2020 at Wembley and there are no plans to change the venue for those games," a UEFA spokesman said on Tuesday.

The semi-finals are set to take place on July 6 and 7 before the final on July 11.

UEFA has abandoned an investigation into Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer's rainbow-coloured captain's armband.

Bayern Munich stalwart Neuer wore the armband in Germany's first two games of Euro 2020 – a 1-0 defeat to France and 4-2 win over Portugal.

The rainbow flag is a symbol of the LGBTQ community, for which Neuer was showing support as countries across the world celebrate 'Pride Month'. 

But reports emerging on Sunday suggested he could face censure from UEFA for his choice of armband.

European football's governing body had apparently deemed the rainbow flag a political statement, which are prohibited in UEFA competitions.

DFB press officer Jens Grittner confirmed proceedings had been opened, saying: "It is true that the captain's armband is being checked. We will also discuss this with UEFA.

"The regulations state that the armband officially provided by UEFA must be worn. June is also a year of 'Pride' in sport to stand up for more diversity.

"This year the DFB is participating with various campaigns. Manuel Neuer has been wearing the rainbow armband since the friendly against Latvia on June 7 as a symbol and clear commitment of the entire team to diversity, openness and tolerance and against hatred and exclusion. 

"The message is: we are colourful! "

However, the German Football Association (DFB) later confirmed that UEFA had already halted the investigation.

A statement read: "UEFA have today shared with the DFB that they have stopped the review of the rainbow captain's armband worn by [Manuel Neuer]. 

"In a letter, the armband has been assessed as a team symbol for diversity and thus for a 'good cause.'"

UEFA has already faced criticism for disregarding the LGBTQ community with its choice of Euro 2020 host cities.

The Hungarian capital, Budapest, has held a number of group-stage fixtures already and is reportedly in the running to take the semi-finals and final from Wembley due to coronavirus concerns.

Hungary's parliament recently passed legislation banning content it believes promotes homosexuality or gender change from its schools – a move which has prompted fierce criticism from the international community.

UEFA has launched an investigation into "potential discriminatory incidents" during Hungary's opening two games at Euro 2020.

Budapest is one of the host cities for the tournament and Hungary's 3-0 defeat to Portugal and 1-1 draw against France in Group F each took place at the Puskas Arena.

During the Portugal game, images of a banner among the home supporters in the stands reading "ANTI LMBTQ" – referring to the Hungarian language abbreviation for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer – circulated on social media. The matter was reported to UEFA by anti-discrimination group Fare.

Before Sunday's game with France, some Hungary fans took part in a pre-match march in Budapest and unveiled a banner opposing the act of kneeling before matches, a peaceful anti-racism protest in which several teams have participated.

Given the latter incident took place outside the stadium, it does not fall under UEFA's jurisdiction.

However, a statement issued by European football's governing body said it was investigating possible acts of discrimination inside the Puskas Arena from both matches.

The statement read: "In accordance with article 31(4) of the UEFA disciplinary regulations, a UEFA ethics and disciplinary inspector has been appointed to conduct a disciplinary investigation regarding potential discriminatory incidents which occurred in the Puskas Arena, Budapest, during the 2020 European Championship group stage matches between the national teams of Hungary and Portugal on 15 June 2021 and between the national teams of Hungary and France played on 19 June 2021.

"Information on this matter will be made available in due course."

The incidents occurred within a highly-charged atmosphere in Hungarian politics at present, in relation to the agenda of prime minister Viktor Orban's right-wing government.

Orban's Fidesz party promotes a Christian-conservative policy platform and last week passed legislation banning schools from activities deemed to promote homosexuality or gender reassignment.

The prime minister has also spoken out about "this kneeling business", claiming the act is one of "provocation" because Hungary does not have a history of slavery.

"If you're a guest in a country then understand its culture and do not provoke it," Orban told a news conference. "Do not provoke the host.

"We can only see this gesture system from our cultural vantage point as unintelligible, as provocation."

A report by The Times on Friday identified Budapest as a possible alternative host to Wembley for the final stages of Euro 2020, amid apparent UEFA concerns regarding the need for overseas attendees to quarantine in line with the UK's COVID-19 restrictions.

UEFA said it was "confident" the semi-finals and final would still take place at England's national stadium as it continued to discuss with the UK government "a strict testing and bubble concept that would mean [fans'] stay in the UK would be less than 24 hours and their movements would be restricted to approved transport and venues only".

UEFA added that a "contingency plan" was in place if an agreement cannot be reached, although it did not specify Budapest or any other alternative venue.

UEFA insists it is "confident" the Euro 2020 final can take place at Wembley Stadium amid reports the governing body is concerned about quarantine measures.

According to The Times, there are discussions within the United Kingdom government about exempting certain officials, sponsors and broadcasters from having to follow self-isolation rules upon arrival in the country for the latter stages of the tournament.

Presently, the vast majority of people travelling to the UK must quarantine for up to 10 days after arriving, a rule aimed at limiting the spread of COVID-19. UK citizens have also been encouraged not to travel abroad for anything but essential reasons.

However, UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has reportedly warned the final will be moved to Budapest unless certain rules are waived, with Hungary's border restrictions much less strict.

UEFA says talks are ongoing with the government to try to ensure fans can attend knockout games at Wembley, which is due to allow a crowd of 50 per cent of its capacity for the two last-16 games, two semi-finals and final.

Under the proposals, fans would be contained within a "strict testing and bubble concept" that would limit them to approved transport and venues and ensure they stayed in the country for less than 24 hours.

It did, however, admit there is a "contingency plan" in place if an agreement cannot be reached.

"UEFA is delighted that the capacity at Wembley will go up to at least 50 per cent for the knockout round matches," UEFA said in a statement.

"At the moment, we are in discussions with the local authorities to try to allow fans of the participating teams to attend the matches, using a strict testing and bubble concept that would mean their stay in the UK would be less than 24 hours and their movements would be restricted to approved transport and venues only.  We understand the pressures that the government face and hope to be able to reach a satisfactory conclusion of our discussions on the matter. 

"There is always a contingency plan but we are confident that the final week will be held in London."

Last week, UK prime minister Boris Johnson announced a delay to the planned final stage of easing of coronavirus restrictions due to rising cases, fuelled by the 'delta' variant first identified in India.

On Thursday, more than 11,000 positive tests for COVID-19 were confirmed, with a week-on-week increase of more than 30 per cent.

UEFA is satisfied with the France medical staff's assessment that Benjamin Pavard did not lose consciousness in Tuesday's Euro 2020 clash with Germany.

Pavard claimed after Les Blues' 1-0 Euro 2020 victory over Germany that he "felt a little knocked out for 10 to 15 seconds" following a collision with Robin Gosens.

The right-back received treatment for several minutes at the Allianz Arena and was eventually allowed to continue playing.

Pavard's return to the pitch and subsequent comments drew criticism from world players' union FIFPro, who demanded answers from UEFA for failing to follow the "concussion charter".

The charter was signed by all 24 teams at Euro 2020 – a commitment to taking a series of measures to improve the care of players and includes neurological baseline testing and access to in-match television replays for team doctors.

However, UEFA released a statement on Thursday stating they are happy the France medical team did not breach a concussion protocol by allowing Pavard to play on.

"According to the reports that we received from the team doctor, it seems that a loss of consciousness did not occur," the statement read. 

"The team doctor did not find any reason to suspect a concussion either on the pitch or after thorough assessment made by a renowned specialist in this field in later follow-up.

"The player will nevertheless continue to be closely monitored over the coming days."

The statement added: "All 24 teams committed to follow the recommendations of the UEFA Concussion Charter before the start of the tournament and the responsibility for decision-making remains with the team doctor.

"If the team doctor has any doubts about unconsciousness or signs of concussion, he should remove the player from the field. 

"The team doctor is the only person who can take the decision for the player to stay on the pitch or be substituted. The team doctor's decision must always be respected, even if the player or the coach believes that the player is fit to continue."

France's 1-0 victory in Munich, sealed through Mats Hummels' first-half own goal, leaves them second to Portugal on goal difference in Group F ahead of Saturday's clash with Hungary in Budapest.

Marko Arnautovic will miss Austria's Euro 2020 clash with the Netherlands on Thursday after being given a one-match ban for an incident during the win over North Macedonia.

Arnautovic had to be restrained by his captain David Alaba as he celebrated scoring in a 3-1 victory in Austria's Group C opener at the National Arena in Bucharest on Sunday.

The 32-year-old, who is of Serbian descent, was accused of yelling a racist insult at North Macedonia players Egzon Bejtulai and Ezgjan Alioski, who both have Albanian roots.

Arnautovic apologised for his conduct but denied using a racial slur.

The Football Federation of Macedonia submitted an official letter to UEFA demanding the most severe punishment possible following what it described as a "nationalist outburst" towards Ezgjan Alioski, who has Albanian roots.

UEFA launched an investigation and decided to ban the 32-year-old for one game, so he will sit out the encounter with the Oranje at Johan Cruijff ArenA for "insulting another player."

Arnautovic responded, stating that he wants positives to come out of his "bad behaviour".

He said in a statement released by the Austrian Football Association (OFB): "I publicly admitted my misconduct at the goal celebration on my own initiative, even before proceedings were initiated, and apologised for it.

"There have been regrettable statements from both sides, but provocations are no justification for my behaviour either. Immediately after the game there was a debate and mutual apology.

"I grew up with people from different countries and cultures and I stand for diversity very clearly. Everyone who knows me knows that. It is very important to me personally to emphasise that. Together with the OFB, I stand for tolerance and integration in all areas of society.

"Precisely because integration is so important to me through my own history, I would like to use this case as an opportunity and provide €25,000 for my integration project, in which I act as a patron, so that my bad behaviour is also a good consequence for more cohesion.

"Above all, I want to be a good role model for children and young people."

Netherlands boss Frank de Boer said of Arnautovic's suspension: "It's a shame for Austria because he's a good player, I know him from his spell with Twente, so yes he's a good player and they will miss him.

"In that way its an advantage for us. He came in as a substitute [versus North Macedonia] and he made a difference right away."

UEFA is to investigate an incident involving Marko Arnautovic as the Austria forward celebrated after scoring against North Macedonia at Euro 2020.

Arnautovic grabbed his team's final goal in the closing minutes of a 3-1 triumph in Bucharest after coming on as a substitute during Sunday's Group C clash.

Media reports said the 32-year-old directed comments at opposing players in the aftermath, with Austria captain David Alaba seemingly attempting to calm his compatriot down.

The Football Federation of Macedonia submitted an official letter to UEFA demanding the most severe punishment possible following what it described as a "nationalist outburst" towards Ezgjan Alioski, who has Albanian roots.

Arnautovic, who is of Serbian descent, issued a statement via social media on Monday to apologise for "some heated words".

Serbia does not recognise the independence of its former province Kosovo, while there is historic tension between Serbia and North Macedonia.

"There were some heated words yesterday in the emotions of the game for which I would like to apologise - especially to my friends from North Macedonia and Albania," Arnautovic posted on Instagram.

"I would like to say one thing very clearly: I am not a racist. I have friends in almost every country and I stand for diversity. Everyone who knows me is aware of that."

UEFA said on Tuesday: "In accordance with the article 31(4) of the UEFA disciplinary regulations, an ethics and disciplinary Inspector has been appointed to conduct an investigation regarding the incident involving the player Marko Arnautovic that occurred during the 2020 European Championship group-stage match between the national teams of Austria and North Macedonia on 13 June 2021."

Austria are next in action on Thursday, taking on the Netherlands - who defeated Ukraine 3-2 in their opening fixture - in Amsterdam.

Christian Eriksen has been in contact with his Inter team-mates as he recovers from a worrying collapse in Denmark's Euro 2020 opener against Finland, the club's CEO Giuseppe Marotta has said.

There were troubling scenes when Eriksen slumped to the ground with no one around him just before half-time of the Group B fixture in Copenhagen, with team-mates forming a protective circle around him as medical personnel rushed to his aid.

UEFA initially confirmed the fixture was suspended but a positive update from the Denmark Football Union later confirmed Eriksen was conscious and receiving further treatment in hospital.

The match would later resume, with Finland securing a 1-0 win in their first ever major tournament match, a result that was understandably overshadowed by the concerning events.

The world of football rallied around in their support of Eriksen, and Marotta offered further good news by revealing the former Tottenham star had messaged Inter's group chat on messaging service WhatsApp.

"We watched the images on TV that suggested something dramatic was happening, which unfortunately we have also seen on Italian pitches before," Marotta told Rai Sport, in quotes translated by Football Italia.

"The players are very close and we all immediately communicated with each other after seeing those images. We didn't want to be invasive and so tried to respect his [recovery] once we had been reassured.

"I can only say that 10 minutes ago Eriksen himself sent a message in our internal chat and this confirms the bond between the players."

Asked if he had an update on Eriksen's condition, Marotta added: "We're optimistic about Christian's condition, Denmark's staff told us that the situation is under control.

"I cannot enter into the merits, the player is under the control of the Danish national team. The best thing I can tell is that Eriksen responded positively, the intervention of [Simon] Kjaer and the doctors was very important."

Denmark team doctor Morten Boesen spoke about the incident with Danish newspaper B.T. saying: "We were called on the pitch when Christian fell over. 

"I did not get to see it, but it soon became clear that he had fallen over. When we got there, he was lying on his side and was breathing.

"We felt the pulse, but pretty quickly the picture changed, and then we started life-saving heart treatment."

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin hailed the "unity of the football family" in wishing a speedy recovery to Denmark star Christian Eriksen.

Inter midfielder Eriksen collapsed to the ground with no one around him shortly before half-time of the Euro 2020 Group B fixture between the Danes and Finland in Copenhagen.

Team-mates formed a protective shield around Eriksen as medical personnel rushed to resuscitate him, and the match was suspended.

There was later a positive update from the Danish Football Union (DBU), which said Eriksen was conscious and set for further medical examinations.

Players, pundits and fans alike united to rally around and send good thoughts to Eriksen, with UEFA chief Ceferin hailing that collective spirit.

"Moments like this put everything in life into perspective. I wish Christian a full and speedy recovery and pray his family has strength and faith," the president's statement, released via UEFA, read.

"At these times, the unity of the football family is so strong and he and his family carry with them the good wishes and prayers of everyone. I heard of fans of both teams chanting his name. Football is beautiful and Christian plays it beautifully."

Following consultations with both sets of players and coaching staffs, the fixture was resumed at 20:30 CET.

DBU football director Peter Moller later told Danish publication DR that Eriksen had been in contact with DBU officials and his team-mates.

Moller praised the "lightning fast treatment" Eriksen received at the stadium, which he said "saved" the former Tottenham playmaker.

Ukraine will be allowed to wear their new Euro 2020 jersey that depicts a map of the country featuring Crimea, but UEFA has ordered them to remove a slogan deemed to carry "militaristic significance".

The kit, styled in the national team's traditional yellow and blue, features a subtle outline surrounding the badge that shows the country's borders.

Following its reveal over the weekend, Russian politicians and officials were quick to criticise the map's inclusion of Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014 but is still internationally recognised as part of Ukraine.

The shirt also contains the inscriptions "Glory to Ukraine" and "Glory to heroes", each of which is acknowledged as an official military greeting in the country.

Russian protestations included an official complain to UEFA regarding the map and the slogans. The governing body has seemingly sided with Ukraine regarding the depiction of Crimea but not the use of military language.

Addressing the use of the map, a UEFA statement read: "Following concerns raised by the Russian Football Union, UEFA today reconfirmed its position regarding the design element on the front of the Ukraine national team shirt.

"Considering that the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 68/262, which was widely approved by the member states, recognizes the territorial borders as broadly depicted by the design, UEFA does not require any modifications of this design element as it meets the criteria laid out in article 12 of the UEFA Equipment Regulations."

The context surrounding the use of the slogans was more nuanced, however, as UEFA accepted that "Glory to our heroes" used in conjunction with "Glory to Ukraine" does have political connotations.

"UEFA also confirmed that the slogan on the outside of the shirt 'Glory to Ukraine' was approved in 2018 and reiterated that UEFA considers this to be in accordance with articles 13 and 19 of the UEFA Equipment Regulations," the statement continued.

"This slogan on its own may be considered as a generic and non-political phrase of general national significance and therefore may be used on the national team shirt.

"UEFA then carefully considered the recently added slogan on the inside of the collar 'Glory to our heroes', which was included in the new shirt sample submitted to UEFA which was subsequently validated in December 2020.

"At that time however, the significance created by the combination of the two slogans was not considered. Following further analysis, this specific combination of the two slogans is deemed to be clearly political in nature, having historic and militaristic significance.

"This specific slogan on the inside of the shirt must therefore be removed for use in UEFA competition matches, in accordance with article 5 of the UEFA Equipment Regulations."

Ukraine begin their Euro 2020 campaign against the Netherlands on June 13 and also face Austria and North Macedonia in Group C.

Russia, who start against Belgium on June 12, are joined by Denmark and Finland in Group B.

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