Adidas bans German fans from adding No.44 to Germany’s new Euro 2024 jerseys

3 Min Read
Adidas bans German fans from adding No.44 to Germany's new Euro 2024 jerseys

Adidas has prohibited football fans from purchasing German football uniforms featuring the number 44, following criticism from the media on their similarity to the emblem utilized by Nazi SS soldiers during World War II.

“We will block personalisation of the jerseys,” an Adidas spokesman said.

The majority of the Nazis’ crimes against humanity were carried out by SS forces. The decision to utilize pink as the away color for the recently unveiled kit has also sparked debate.

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Historian Michael König was the first to bring out the symbolic issue, stating that the kits’ design was “very questionable”.

In 1929, the SS rune was created specifically for use by Nazi forces. The SS included both Gestapo agents and guards for concentration camps. Managing the death camps where millions of Jews and other people were executed was one of the SS’s responsibilities.

Oliver Brüggen, a representative for Adidas, refuted claims that the uniform intentionally bore similarities to Nazi insignia.

“We as a company are committed to opposing xenophobia, anti-Semitism, violence and hatred in every form,” he said.

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Adidas informed the BBC separately that the numbers on the shirts were created in collaboration with the German Football Association (DFB) and its partners.

The DFB stated in a tweet on Twitter/X that “none of the parties involved saw any proximity to Nazi symbolism” and that the shirt designs had been submitted to UEFA for assessment during the design process.

They also mentioned that a different design would be created for the number 4.

The away color of the same uniform, bright pink, has caused more controversy. Advocates claim that the color symbolizes the diversity of the nation. However, detractors contend that it is unconventional and was only used to generate funds for the DFB.

Since the 1950s, Adidas has produced German soccer jerseys.

However, Economy Minister Robert Habeck has attacked the DFB’s intention to replace German firm Adidas with American behemoth Nike as the maker of German football uniforms starting in 2027, calling it a lack of “patriotism.”

The European Football Championship, which will take place in ten different cities this year, will be hosted by Germany.

By Shyam
Shyam Sharma who joined SPORTS BIG NEWS in 2021. Focuses on soccer – chiefly the Premier League, LaLiga, UEFA Champions League, Liga MX and MLS. On occasion, also covers American sports, general news and entertainment. Fascinated by the language of sport – particularly the under-appreciated art of translating cliché-speak.