Saudi football officials apologise for not observing silence over London attack against Australia

Senior Saudi football officials have apologised after their national team chose not to participate in a minute’s silence for the victims of the London Bridge attacks in their match against Australia.

Australian players linked arms as a sign of respect before last Thursday’s World Cup qualifying match at Adelaide Oval.

Saudi players took up field positions whilst others continued to stretch.

Football officials said they had been told in advance that the “tradition was not in keeping with Saudi culture” which an Australian MP described as “disgraceful”.

FIFA has confirmed that the Saudi team will not face sanctions.

It said it had reviewed what had happened and judged that there were “no grounds to take disciplinary action”.

Australian football officials said the Saudi team had agreed a minute’s silence could be held.

But officials were “further advised by Saudi team officials that this tradition was not in keeping with Saudi culture and they would move to their side of the field and respect our custom whilst taking their own positions on the field”, a statement from Football Federation Australia said.

The Saudi Arabian Football Federation made an “unreserved” apology on Friday.

It stated: “The players did not intend any disrespect to the memories of the victims or to cause upset to their families, friends or any individual affected by the atrocity.

“The Saudi Arabian Football Federation condemns all acts of terrorism and extremism and extends its sincerest condolences to the families of all the victims and to the government and people of the United Kingdom.”

This video was cross-posted from the Goals & Highlights YouTube channel.

As you’re here…

5Pillars have one humble request from you…

Thousands of Muslims around the world visit our website for news every day. Due to the unfortunate reality of covering Muslim-related news in a heightened Islamophobic environment, our advertising and fundraising revenues have decreased significantly.

5Pillars is editorially and financially independent, with no sectarian or political allegiance to any particular group or movement. Our journalism has been exclusively grassroots focussed and our sole purpose is to defend Islam and Muslims in the media.

This makes us unique in comparison to other online Muslim media outlets who are neither independently regulated by a reputable body nor are they managed by qualified journalists.

Our journalism takes time, money and effort to deliver. But we do it because we believe we have a duty to Allah (swt).

You may not agree or like everything we publish. However, which other Muslim news site that is run by experienced journalists will take on the responsibility of being a shield for Islam and Muslims in the media?

If you follow 5Pillars, and you understand its importance in today’s climate, then please support us for as little as £5 a month, it only takes a minute to make a donation. Jazakallah khayran.

Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:“The best deeds are those done regularly, even if they are small.” [Ibn Mājah]



Add your comments below