Ireland FA Faces Disciplinary Action Over Easter Rising Logo
FIFA has opened disciplinary proceedings against the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) over an Easter Rising logo on the team's shirts in a March friendly.
 
The Republic players' jerseys bore the logo to mark the 100th anniversary of the uprising during a match against Switzerland on March 25.
 
The Easter Rising took place in April 1916, with a group of around 1,000 rebels who sought an independent Irish Republic challenging the British Government, resulting in 485 deaths. A statement from FIFA read: 
"We can confirm that disciplinary proceedings have been opened on this matter. Please understand we cannot comment further at this stage nor speculate on any outcome."
It comes after the Football Association and Scottish Football Association's decision to press ahead with plans to commemorate Armistice Day by allowing players to wear black armbands embroidered with a poppy during the World Cup qualifier on November 11.
 
FIFA has stated that the poppy symbol would breach its rules regarding political, religious or commercial messages being carried on players' equipment.
 
The FA and SFA insist the poppy is a symbol of remembrance and respect and should not be regarded as political.
 
The Royal British Legion, meanwhile, has called on FIFA to reconsider its position. FIFA stated its position in a statement released on Thursday, which read: 
 
"FIFA fully respects the significance of commemorating Remembrance Day on November 11 each year.
"The Laws of the Game are overseen by the International Football Association Board (composed of the four British FAs and FIFA) and (are) applicable to all 211 member associations. The relevant Law 4, para. 4, clearly states that the players' equipment should not carry any political, religious or commercial messages.
"The Laws are applied uniformly in the event of similar requests by any member association to commemorate similar historic events."
 
It is not clear what the sanction will be for the FAI if it is found to have breached FIFA's laws, or what sanction would be imposed on the FA or SFA if they press ahead with their plans for the poppy armband.
 
A compromise was reached with FIFA to allow England players to wear a poppy armband during the friendly against Spain in November 2011, but the leadership of the world governing body, which has changed significantly in the intervening five years, has taken a tougher stance this time.
 
A poll of Forces TV readers, meanwhile, found that 99.3% were in favour of allowing players to wear poppies, with only 0.7% thinking it was a bad idea.
 
Cover photo a library image of Ireland in action at the Aviva Stadium.