England U-21 player booked for paying tribute to late father | inside World Soccer

Saido Berahino scored two goals in the England U-21 side's 3-0 win over Finland on Thursday night, but was given a yellow card for dedicating his first goal to his late father.

Saido Berahino lifts his shirt to reveal a tribute to his deceased father
Saido Berahino lifts his shirt to reveal a tribute to his deceased father

Photo: The FA

The West Bromwich Albion striker slotted home from close range to double the Young Lions' advantage just before the break.

After scoring the goal, Berahino ran over to England fans and showed a shirt with "RIP Love U Dad" scrawled on it.

Berahino's father was one of the estimated 300,000 killed in the civil war that plagued Burundi, leading to him leave the capital of Bujumbura for Birmingham a decade ago.

However, the referee in the U-21 European Championship qualifying match, Italian Paolo Valeri, saw fit to book the 20-year-old.

Under FIFA Law, Rule 4 states that: "Players must not reveal undershirts which contain slogans or advertising. The basic compulsory equipment must not contain any political, religious or personal statements.

"A player removing his jersey to reveal slogans or advertising will be sanctioned by the competition organiser. The ream of a player whose basic compulsory equipment contains political, religious or personal slogans or statements will be sanctioned by the competition organiser."

Berahino explained to FATV: "I just had a few problems at home and I’d been thinking about my dad. And today I wanted to score a lot for my dad.

"My mum’s watching at home and I wanted to show her I still love my dad and miss him.”

He's not the first player to be booked after dedicating a goal to a deceased loved-one, Andrés Iniesta was booked in the 2010 World Cup final after scoring a goal and revealing a message on his vest which paid tribute to former Espanyol player Dani Jarque, who had recently passed away.


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