Ilkay Gundogan proud of first Muslim World Cup ‘now the politics is finished’

Ilkay Gundogan in action for Germany during the World Cup (Reuters)
Ilkay Gundogan in action for Germany during the World Cup (Reuters)

Ilkay Gundogan says that, as someone who comes from a Muslim family, the community is "proud" that Qatar is hosting the World Cup and that "now the politics is finished".

The German squad have made one of the most high-profile protests against Fifa and the Qatari state at this World Cup, having put their hands over their mouths for the team photo before the 2-1 defeat to Japan. That came after Fifa had warned of "unlimited liability" should they wear the OneLove armbands.

"We had a few players who were mad with Fifa because there were things planned with the team, a few players were frustrated and wanted to show something," Gundogan said in the mixed zone after the 1-1 draw with Spain. "We had the discussion in the team, and it was decided that we will do this gesture against Fifa. If you do it, do it as a team."

From Gundogan's point of view, the statement has now been made, and it's time for Germany to concentrate on trying to get through the group and win the World Cup. He also spoke of his pride on coming from a Muslim family, and seeing a predominantly Muslim country host the tournament.

"My point of view is now the politics are finished. Qatar is very proud, very proud to host it, also first muslim country, I come from a muslim family, the muslim community is proud, now it is about enjoying and celebrating football."