Israel and Poland Under 21 players hold minute silence AFTER kick off

Israel and Poland Under 21s players hold minute silence AFTER kick off to protest UEFA’s refusal to hold a moment of remembrance for Hamas attack victims

  • Israel and Poland players held a moment of remembrance after kick off
  • UEFA refused to grant permission for a minute silence to be held pre-match
  • Southgate’s loyalty to his players is an issue and a weakness – It’s All Kicking Off

UEFA’s refusal to hold a moment of silence for victims of the October 7 Hamas attacks in Israel, forced players into creating their own show of respect in an Under 21 match on Friday.

Poland’s youth side hosted Israel in Lodz and both teams decided to observe a minute of remembrance as soon as the whistle was blown to signal the start of the game. 

The moment of reflection related to attacks in Israel by the Hamas terrorist group when they broke Gaza’s militarised border to kill about 1,200 people, most of them civilians, and take about 240 hostage, according to Israeli officials.

Both sets of players stood in silence once the referee got the game underway and no action took place for the first minute of the match while all inside the ground observed the moment of respect.

Players remained in their formational positions rather than come together as is usual with pre-match tributes and there was silence around the ground as well.

Both Poland and Israel players observed the moment of silence after the game kicked off

Israel players were joined by their Polish opposition to mark the gesture of remembrance

Players looked emotional as they paid tribute to victims of Hamas attacks  in Israel in October

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Some supporters gathered in the Stadium LKS main stand for the youth encounter that eventually ended with Poland securing a valuable 2-1 victory. 

The result leave Israel bottom of group D in qualification for the European Under-21 Championship. Israel though have only played two games with the five sides ahead of them playing up to as many as five games already. 

Match officials were also seen waiting patiently alongside the players who remained virtually motionless for the entirety of the minute silence.

UEFA and other football governing bodies have had to balance political decision making with sport in recent weeks as the war in the Middle East continues to worsen.

The European footballing body reportedly refused to give permission for a minute silence to be held pre-match and that decision sparked the unusual showing.

UEFA previously gave teams permission to hold a moment of silence before European Championship qualifying matches in October but the latest round of games haven’t featured a similar gesture.

The senior Israeli side play again on Saturday against Romania after they held Switzerland to a 1-1 draw in a ‘home game’ which was held in Hungary due to the country’s ongoing conflict with Palestine. 

During their game with Switzerland, Israel fans held up signs bearing the faces of those who were kidnapped during last month’s attacks. 

Poland went on to win the European youth match 2-1 that leaves Israel bottom of the group

Israel captain Eli Dasa, held up a shoe of a young boy he said was kidnapped by Hamas militants, during an emotional tribute during a press conference ahead of the game with Switzerland. 

‘It is hard to speak at the moment, but I don´t think that any of you can guess what is the story behind this shoe,’ Dasa said.

‘This kid is in Gaza Strip at the moment with seven, seven people from his family.

‘That´s all what´s left from his house. This left shoe. We wait for him here,’ he continued, before standing up and leaving the news conference.

Israel and Palestine tributes have been a dividing topic and flags of either nation have been banned from appearing at games in an effort to prevent violence in ground.

On Friday, it was reported that the Palestinian death toll in the Israel-Hamas war has reached 12,000 just hours after Israel found the remains of another hostage from the October 7 attacks. 

Israel’s senior captain Eli Dasa shows a shoe of a kidnapped Israeli boy during a press conference ahead of their game with Switzerland earlier this week


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