Adidas pulls sale of German number 44 football jersey over Nazi symbolism

The personalised jersey has been pulled from sale. Credit: AP

Adidas has pulled the sale of the new German national team's football jerseys because the number 44 bared a resemblance to the logo of the Nazi Party’s notorious SS paramilitary units.

Adidas on Monday stopped offering the personalisation of jerseys with names and numbers, and the German Football Federation halted the delivery of jerseys with the number 44 from its own online shop.

The federation said it was looking for an alternative design for the number 4 together with its partner, 11teamsports.

“None of the parties involved saw any proximity to Nazi symbolism in the development process of the jersey design,” the federation said on X, formerly Twitter.

The moves to withdraw jerseys with the number 44 came after it was pointed out that the two fours together resembled the stylized SS used by the Nazi Party’s Schutzstaffel group.

Commonly known as the SS, it included police units, combat forces and others who ran the concentration camps that carried out the mass killings of civilians during World War II.

The stylized SS symbol is banned in Germany today.

Adidas spokesman Oliver Brüggen told news agency DPA that the federation and 11teamsports were responsible for the design of the names and numbers on the shirts.

Adidas has manufactured German jerseys since the 1950s.

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