Rangers have defied the UEFA ban on the British teams by playing the national anthem ahead of their Champions League match, with the Scottish side playing ‘God Save the King’ on Ibrox speakers.
As the day progressed, Rangers and Chelsea both felt they were ignoring UEFA’s national anthem rules after seeing supporter groups urging fans to sing the national anthem before Red Bull’s game against Salzburg.
With no Napoli fans in tow due to a policing shortage the Rangers crowd first observed a full minute’s silence before the national anthem was played over the speaker system.
There were many Queen tributes at Chelsea, and an impromptu version of the British national anthem sung by fans before kick-off, despite the advice suggesting not to do so.
UEFA Denied Permission to Sing National Anthem
This week, Sportsmail has revealed that UEFA has turned down requests from British clubs to sing the national anthem ahead of European matches on Wednesday night following the Queen’s demise.
Manchester City, Chelsea and Rangers have all asked for a license to play God Save the King before their home games.
UEFA has said to refuse ‘on the basis of maintaining a consistent pre-match ceremony with a subdued atmosphere and without any celebratory activities across all UK venues to show respect’.
European football governing bodies chose not to play the Champions League national anthem before kickoff, although, teams and staff wearing black armbands were requested, but no national anthems were permitted.
However, Rangers chose to ignore UEFA’s decision entirely, with the PA announcer confirming that the British national anthem would follow before silence.
Manchester City approached her UEFA, but after being denied that right, followed protocol and did not play the national anthem like the Rangers.
Chelsea didn’t play it on the stadium’s loudspeakers, nonetheless fans gathered to play the anthem before silence.
In Manchester, however, both City and opponents Borussia Dortmund held a minute’s silence in memory of the Queen.
Thousands of Rangers fans came out with flags to honor the Queen. Meanwhile, Union Jack flags adorned the outskirts of the stadium before the Rangers’ Champions League homecoming.
Chelsea fans created their own banner tribute reading ‘RIP YOUR MAJESTY’ at the end of the shed before committing to a version of the national anthem as the players emerged from the tunnel.
On wednesday morning, a group of Chelsea supporters called on fans to sing the national anthem that evening to defy the UEFA ban.
A photo posted on Twitter showed fans lining up with Union Jack flags at Stamford Bridge before the game. The image showed one end of the floor decorated with Union flags of his jacks, and an accompanying post urged fans who came to the game to do the same.
The tweet stated, “Setting up for tomorrow. Bring your Union Jack flags tomorrow if you have them. RIP Your Majesty”.
Red Bull Salzburg fans walked silently to Stamford Bridge to pay their respects.
In a video shared on the Austrian club’s Twitter page, fans can be seen walking towards the stadium in silence.
“Out of respect for the Queen, our fans walked in silence from Earl’s Court to the stadium”, read a tweet. “We remain united with the people of the UK in this time of grief.”
In contrast, Celtic fans sported aggressive banners reading ‘F*** the Crown’ during Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Shakhtar Donetsk.
BT Sport has been forced to apologize after tweaking an offensive banner surrounding the Queen’s death.
However, following pre-match meetings between Celtic, Shakhtar and UEFA, it was decided that there would be no minute’s silence before kick-off.
God Save The King was first sung at the Oval on Saturday before the third test between England and South Africa and will be used as a tribute for the Queen’s demise in this weekend’s Premier League match.
Just an hour after the Queen’s death was announced last week, other games played out with similarly poignant scenes. Thousands of West Ham fans went wild with a moving performance of ‘God Save the Queen’.