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Denmark football team to wear training clothes with ‘human rights messages’ at World Cup in Qatar

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Denmark’s national football team is set to wear “human rights messages” on their training uniforms at next year’s World Cup in Qatar

Denmark, who qualified for a spot in the tournament last month, is set to wear training clothes with “human rights messages” when they play at the World Cup in Qatar in 2022.

After the team’s qualification, the Danish football federation stated on Wednesday that it had launched a series of “critical initiatives” to bring along to the games.

Qatar, a national already facing criticism amid reports of discriminatory laws and conditions for the migrant workers, are preparing the country for the tournament.

The news comes as the country faces fresh scrutiny over last year’s invasive medical examinations on women who arrived at Qatar airport, when a baby was found in a bin.

On Wednesday, a group of Australian women, some of whom were subjected to invasive medical examinations after authorities found an abandoned baby at Doha international airport, revealed plans to sue the Qatar government, according to a statement released by their lawyer.

Danish soccer federation to carry messages as a sponsorship

The Danish soccer federation, known as DBU, said the two sponsors for the training outfits would refrain from exposure on the clothes and would instead carry “critical messages and markings”.

“DBU has long been strongly critical of the World Cup in Qatar, but now we are intensifying our efforts and critical dialogue further, so that we take advantage of the fact that we are qualified to work for more change in the country,”

Danish soccer federation managing director Jacob Jensen said.
Qatar facing fresh criticism / Image: File

The team added that it would also minimise the number of trips to Qatar for staff and partners so “participation in the World Cup finals is primarily about sporting participation and not promoting the World Cup organisers’ events”.

The federation added that it would “continuously conduct due diligence” on its choice of hotels for team players and other services in Qatar to see that labour rights were respected. It also said it would consider the possibility of other initiatives to improve conditions in Qatar.

Anthony Lucas is reporter, presenter and social media producer with ticker News. Anthony holds a Bachelor of Professional Communication, with a major in Journalism from RMIT University as well as a Diploma of Arts and Entertainment journalism from Collarts. He’s previously worked for 9 News, ONE FM Radio and Southern Cross Austerio’s Hit Radio Network. 

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Football clubs like Manchester United are getting more expensive

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Manchester United: the business tactics that could lead to a record multi-billion-pound sale

It seems that another item can now be added to the long list of things that are getting more expensive: football clubs. The bids coming in to buy Manchester United, reportedly in the region of £4.5bn (the owners are said to want £6bn) would make it the largest amount ever paid for a club.

Given that the current US owners, the Glazer family, bought Manchester United in 2005 for around £800 million, the current valuation makes it unsurprising that a sale may be on the cards.

But can a football club, even one as famous as Manchester United, really be worth £6bn?

For comparison, in 2021 one of its rivals, Newcastle United, sold for a fraction of that sum, at around £300 million. Yet given that Newcastle had been bought for £133 million in 2007 (about £200 million in today’s money), that controversial sale was still seen as providing a decent return.

But it was Chelsea, sold in May 2022, which started the sale bonanza among the biggest British clubs. Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur have all been linked to potential sales since then.

Chelsea had been bought for £140 million by Roman Abramovich in 2003, when it was struggling financially. Two decades later, its £2.5 billion price was achieved despite the club being what is known as a “distressed asset” (something that needed to be sold because Abramovich had been sanctioned by the UK government), meaning that bids were probably lower than if the sale had been on the open market.

Crucially though, Chelsea had also become a more impressive club, winning a number of trophies (two Champions League, two Europa League, five Premier League titles and five FA Cups). (The profit from the Chelsea sale is now earmarked for humanitarian causes in Ukraine.)

Another important element behind a club’s value is, of course, how much any potential owner is willing to pay. Research suggests that owning a football club is generally something that loses money, so owners normally fit one of three categories.

First, there are those who view clubs as a trophy asset; second, fans or local benefactors who want to support their side; and third, those that think they can make money from the club by making changes.

The Glazers fall squarely into the last category, and took the opportunity to buy a club through a leveraged buyout – in essence, using comparatively little of their own money – and taking money out annually through dividends.

That leveraged buyout meant that some of the money used to buy the club was secured against the club itself, like a mortgage, so the debt was borne by the club rather than the owners.

And that debt was considerable. Over the ownership of the Glazers, £837 million has been spent on interest payments alone.

Another reason for the increase in value of clubs has been the increase in revenue they can generate. The Premier League, for example, has been significantly increasing its income from selling overseas broadcasting rights (the latest US deal is more than double its previous one), and this leads to more money for the clubs. Increasing global interest in the Premier League has also added value to the small number of clubs which feature in it.

Other things that affect the value of clubs have nothing to do with football. For example, the pandemic led to the very rich getting richer and so there is more disposable income at the billionaire potential owner level.

But ownership comes with plenty of risk too and, like winning matches, financial success is never guaranteed. Around 40% of football clubs in the top four leagues of English football have gone into administration since the Premier League began, including eight of the original 22 Premier League members.

The culture of spending above your means in English football may, in the long term, be tempered by the proposed implementation of an independent regulator. In the meantime football club ownership remains, for most, a loss-making business.

For the Glazers though, selling their club for around £5 billion would surely be seen as a big win. They put in relatively little of their own money to buy it, have taken money out in dividends, and are now expected to make a massive profit on the sale price. Divisive tactics they may have been, but very lucrative too.

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Formula Equal team vying for 2026 entrance into F1

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There are four potential entrants into the sport for 2026, and one of them is aiming to have an equal number of gendered people

A team consisting of an equal gender split workforce has unveiled plans to join the Formula 1 for its 2026 season.

The group is among four potential entrants to the sport.

Former BAR boss Craig Pollock is behind it all.

He says the concept has been slowly gaining momentum in the background for years.

“This has been going on for close on four years, the building up of a brand new Formula 1 team, but taking into it our ambition to deliver and build opportunities and pathways for women to get to the very top level inside motorsports,” Pollock told CNN.

Pollock also addressed the idea of seeing a female Formula 1 driver in the seat, but says there’s a a long way to go before that happens.

“I think it’d be absolutely fantastic (to have a female driver),” Pollock explained.

“But the reality is to be able to get into the cockpit of a Formula 1 car, you’ve got to have a certain number of points on your superlicence.

“But to make this very clear, this is not just about women driving Formula 1 cars.

“This is about throughout the team; we want it even up to the board level if we can do that.

“We would like to have a gender equal Formula 1 team going forward,” he concluded.

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Fans swamp Argentine restaurant to see Lionel Messi

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The footballer needed a police escort to leave the venue

A steakhouse in Buenos Aires was mobbed by hundreds of fans who wanted to get a glimpse of their favourite football megastar.

People rushed to the exclusive Don Julio restaurant eager to get a glimpse of the man who led Argentina to its third World Cup title.

Messi eventually needed a police escort to leave.

Fans on the street corner chanted his name as police officers accompanied the 35-year-old to his vehicle while keeping fans at bay.

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