Man who invaded pitch with LGBTQIA+ flag banned from World Cup

The Italian Mario Ferri, who invaded the field on Monday (28) during the match between Portugal and Uruguay with an LGBTQIA+ flag, was banned from the World Cup in Qatar.

In addition to carrying the rainbow flag, Ferri invaded the Lusail Stadium lawn wearing a shirt featuring the fictional hero ‘Super Man’ with protest messages stamped on it. “Save Ukraine” was written on the front, while “Respect for Ukrainian Women” appeared on the back. He even walked across the lawn, but was quickly immobilized by security and removed from the scene.

After being released, he spoke out on social media.

“Breaking the rules for a good cause is never a crime. The world must change. We can do this together with strong gestures that come from the heart. With courage. We want a free world that respects all races and ideas […] Thank you for all the love messages from the world,” he wrote on his Instagram.

Yesterday’s field invasion was not an isolated case for Ferri, who is an “expert” in the matter. The Italian has already invaded other World Cup matches in the 2010 editions, in South Africa, and in the 2014 edition, in Brazil.

The man’s protest took place in a country that has strong restrictions. In Qatar, homosexuality is considered an offense against the law. The debate and the positioning of the public present at the World Cup on the subject generated numerous controversies, with bans on rainbow flags in stadiums and actions planned by players, as in the case of the use of the captain’s armband in support of diversity.

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