FIFA says England and Scotland cannot wear poppy armbands

LONDON: FIFA has rejected a request by England and Scotland for their players to wear armbands featuring poppies during their World Cup qualifier on Nov. 11 in commemoration of the armistice that ended World War One, the Scottish FA (SFA) said on Tuesday.

The world governing body's rules forbid players from wearing poppies as they are perceived as a political statement but SFA chief Stewart Regan said he would ask FIFA to change their minds.

"I can understand why they are doing this but it is nothing more than a mark of respect," Regan told the BBC. "It is a personal choice. This is not about making some political point."

Regan said he and English FA chief executive Martin Glenn would meet FIFA officials on Thursday to discuss the issue.

"We will be asking for their support to try to give the people of England and Scotland what they want. That is to use this match as a way of remembering people who lost their lives in the war," he said.

The Football Association of Wales has said it is seeking approval for its players to wear a poppy symbol on their shirts when they play Serbia in a Group D qualifier in Cardiff on Nov. 12, the day after Armistice Day.