English soccer club Altrincham FC are set to make history with their new kit inspired by the Pride flag.
The Greater Manchester team claim its switch to the rainbow will see them be the first team to play a competitive game in an LGBTI-inclusive kit.
The initiative is also in support of the campaign Football v Homophobia which works to promote inclusivity in soccer.
Players will don the rainbow for a league game with Bradford (Park Avenue) on 16 February.
‘Football matches should reflect the nation’
Altrincham FC director Bill Waterson told GSN: ‘Our ambition is that football communities reflect the national demographic.
‘Football is our national sport and part of our national psyche and therefore our football matches should reflect the nation.
‘It’s our obligation as people who run a football club to make the grounds a welcoming place for everyone.’
Waterson said the team’s strong support of Football v Homophobia last year gave him confidence.
He said the team can come back ‘even stronger with a more blatant message around our support for LGBT+ people.’
After the game, the shirts worn by the players will be auctioned off to raise money for The Proud Trust, a charity for homeless LGBTI youth.
The group is also currently raising £2.25 million to rebuild its LGBTI center which is one of its kind in the UK.
Replica versions of the jersey will be sold at the game and on the team’s website.
But this is not the first time Altrincham FC showed their colors in soccer.
In 2017 the club was selected as one of four clubs to be promoted and funded by Fans for Diversity, a campaign to diversity football.
This included a one-off game where the team wore kits bearing the charity’s name.