Why do Denmark’s World Cup 2022 “protest” jerseys resemble ordinary T-shirts?

For the past six years, Hummel has provided the national soccer teams of Denmark with eye-catching jerseys that include chevrons down the shoulders. But the Danish men came to the 2022 World Cup and played here on Tuesday wearing a uniform that resembles a simple red jersey and serves as a protest.


The signature chevrons and the Hummel and Denmark emblems are present, but they are all “toned down” because, as Hummel stated after the kits were released, “We don’t intend to be prominent during a competition that has cost thousands of people their lives.”

Its suggestion that poor working conditions in Qatar contributed to the deaths of migrants who built World Cup-related infrastructure was challenged.

Hummel claimed that the 1992 Denmark squad, which won the European title, was also “inspired by” the jerseys. But what Hummel described as “a protest against Qatar and its human rights record” was the most striking component of their “dual message.” Qatar has come under fire for its suppression of free expression, intolerance of homosexuality, and limitations on the rights of women in addition to its exploitation of migrant workers.

However, the shirts provoked claims of hypocritical marketing and theatrical branding. They are being produced in China, and Hummel will profit from them, as a result of which it will also indirectly profit from the World Cup in Qatar.

When announcing the uniforms, the DBU, the Danish soccer body, made no mention of the protest. Instead, it concentrated on “the 30th anniversary of Danish football’s greatest achievement,” the 1992 Euros. The “kit has been built in close coordination with DBU,” according to Hummel. However, it appears that the century-old sportswear firm, with its headquarters in Denmark and no other 2022 World Cup teams, is the main proponent of what are now referred to as the “protest jerseys.”

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