FIFA: female footballers may wear headscarves on the pitch

ANKARA - Women players may wear headscarves on the pitch, if they want to, FIFA`s Secretary General Jerome Valcke said on Saturday.

Speaking at the 128th Annual General Meeting of the International Football Association Board (IFAB) held at the Home of FIFA in Zurich, Valcke said that the lift of the ban would apply in all countries.

He stressed that the headscarves must be plain, and the same color as the football strip.

Valcke also said that headcovers for men were also formally permitted after a two-year trial period.

We decided to give this permit upon a request from Muslim countries, who stated that this would help promote women`s football, he added.

Until 2012, players were not allowed to wear head covers in games on the grounds that they could cause possible injury to the neck and head. IFAB agreed to allow a two-year pilot in 2012 upon the request of the Asian Football Confederation.

"After a two-year pilot, the IFAB agreed that there was no indication as to why the wearing of head covers should be prohibited, as long as their design restrictions are respected in line with the new wording of Law 4 - The Players’ Equipment, agreed on at today’s AGM," according to an official press release.

Law 4 was also modified to clarify that both compulsory equipment and undergarments must not have any kind of slogans, statements or images, the statement said.

The modifications to the Laws of the Game will take effect on 1 June 2014, taking into account the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

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