Euro 2024: “German team is truly exceptional. Just imagine if there were only white players” 0

A senior German politician has apologised for the way she worded a comment about the skin colour of members of the country’s football team, in which she praised them and asked what it would be like if there were only white players.

Green MP Katrin Göring-Eckardt, who is also the deputy leader of the German federal parliament, appeared to be referring to a recent survey that found 21% of respondents would prefer to see more white people in Germany’s squad.

“This team is truly exceptional. Just imagine if there were only white German players,” she wrote after Germany beat Hungary 2-0 in the Euro 2024 tournament. She also added three rainbow emojis.

But after criticism on social media, including from fellow MPs, Ms Göring-Eckardt deleted the post and apologised for the way it was phrased.

She later took to X, formerly Twitter, again to explain herself.

“It upset me that 21% of Germans would prefer it if there were more “whites” in the national team,” Ms Göring-Eckardt wrote.

“I’m proud of this team and hope that we can convince the 21% too.”

Ms Göring-Eckardt’s original post was quickly criticised, with some accusing her of racism despite the fact she was praising the team’s diversity.

“I find it really worrying when people in Germany are judged by the colour of their skin,” said Wolfgang Kubicki, the deputy leader of the Free Democratic Party (FDP), which is part of Germany’s coalition government alongside the Greens.

Manuel Ostermann from the centre-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party also commented.

“Are you judging people based on their appearance? According to your own definition, that would be racist,” he said.

The survey Ms Göring-Eckardt was responding to was commissioned by Sport Inside, which airs on German public broadcaster WDR.

It was part of a documentary on racial diversity within the national team and how it is viewed by the public.

Player Joshua Kimmich described the survey as “racist” when it was first reported earlier this month, while coach Julian Nagelsmann said it was “insane”.

“We play a Euro for everyone in the country and whoever plays top football is invited to be a national team member,” Mr Nagelsmann said.

“I hope I never have to read such crap polls again.”

Source: BBC