Stoke City release statement after James McClean confirms he won't wear a poppy on his jersey
"I ask people to be respectful of the choice I have made, just as I’m respectful of people who do choose to wear a poppy.”
James McClean will not be wearing wear a Remembrance Day poppy on his jersey for Stoke City's upcoming games against Middlesbrough and Nottingham Forest.
The 29-year-old took the same approach at his previous clubs - Sunderland, Wigan Athletic and West Bromwich Albion - and he has previously been extremely articulate about his reasons for doing so.
Ahead of his decision not to wear the poppy for Stoke's upcoming games, the Derry native released a brief statement which read: "I know many people won’t agree with my decision or even attempt to gain an understanding of why I don’t wear a poppy. I accept that but I would ask people to be respectful of the choice I have made, just as I’m respectful of people who do choose to wear a poppy.”
Stoke City, meanwhile, released a statement which read: “As a club we will be supporting the Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal by wearing the Poppy on our home shirt in the fixture against Middlesbrough on November 3 and on our away shirt in the fixture against Nottingham Forest on November 10. The Club is proud of its close connections with the Armed Forces and have also invited members of the Armed Forces to join our remembrance at the Middlesbrough fixture."
The statement adds: “However, we recognise that the Poppy means different things to different individuals and communities and (like the Royal British Legion) do not believe that anybody should be forced or even pressured to wear the Poppy against their free will. James has informed us that he will not be wearing a Remembrance Day Poppy in our next two games. We respect his decision and his right to follow his own convictions.”
— Stoke City FC (@stokecity) October 30, 2018