Jump directly to the content

Why doesn’t West Brom star James McClean wear a poppy?

West Bromwich Albion star James McClean refuses to wear a poppy on his shirt to commemorate Remembrance Day - but why does he do it?

West Brom star James McClean will again refuse to wear the poppy on his shirt this season.

But why does the Baggies star decided not to have the symbol of Remembrance Day on his kit?

The Republic of Ireland midfielder did not wear a shirt adorned by the poppy during the club’s 4-0 defeat to Manchester City last season.

West Brom star James McClean refuses to wear a poppy


And he has also refused to do the same thing at both former clubs Sunderland and Wigan.

Speaking about the controversy last year, James McClean wrote in the West Brom programme: “We are coming up to Remembrance Day and I won’t wear a poppy on my shirt.

“People say I am being disrespectful but don’t ask why I choose not to wear it.

“If the poppy was simply about World War One and Two victims alone, I’d wear it without a problem.

“I would wear it everyday of the year if that was the thing but it doesn’t, it stands for all the conflicts that Britain has been involved in.

“Because of the history where I come from in Derry, I cannot wear something that represents that.”

McClean added: “My attitude is to live and let live, honestly, and I don’t think we should have any ideas forced on us just as I don’t want to force my ideas on anyone else.

“The Albion fans have been great to me and I just want to put it out in black and white why I do what I do and give my side of the story.

“If I were to sing the British national anthem, then that would be disrespectful to the place I come from.

“A lot of people are still hurting there and so I can’t pretend that that didn’t happen.”