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Scotland and Wales FAs refusing to back idea of Team GB at Olympics

The Scottish Football Association (SFA) has stressed that it does not support the idea of a Team GB at the Olympics, despite working alongside the English Football Association (FA) to defy FIFA's ban on poppies.

England and Scotland meet in a World Cup qualifier on Friday, with the FA and SFA having said the teams will wear poppies on black armbands despite it going against the rules of FIFA, which has threatened potential sanctions.

However, SFA president Alan McRae says such teamwork does not mean his governing body is behind a united Team GB men's and women's side participating at future Olympics.

"Our position is quite clear: We do not support a Team GB for the Olympic football tournament," he told ESPN FC. "We have held this view for quite some time and after discussing it, nothing has changed.

"This is not a reflection on our relationship with the English FA. We have worked very well with them and this whole poppy issue has helped us forge even closer ties. But this reinforced spirit of cooperation does not open the door to a Team GB."

The two remaining home nations -- Northern Ireland and Wales -- have also been supported by the FA and SFA over their negotiations with FIFA to wear poppies for their upcoming World Cup qualifying matches, but they too remain opposed to a Team GB Olympic side.

Team GB sides were formed for the 2012 Olympic Games in London as a one-off.

Northern Ireland have decided to wear black armbands without poppies for their clash against Azerbaijan on Friday, while Wales have yet to make a decision for their match against Serbia on Saturday.

"While there has been fantastic unity shown by all four home nations on the issue of wearing poppies for our games we remain opposed to a GB Olympic football team," Football Association of Wales president David Griffiths said.

"Along with Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland we agreed to participating in the London 2012 football tournament but that was a one-off which will not be repeated."

One-off teams were formed for the home 2012 Games in London, yet no one in either the men's or women's team hailed from Northern Ireland and there were just five Welshmen and two Scotswomen across the sides.

The issue of Team GB sides participating at future Olympics was raised again in September when representatives of the four home nations discussed it at the UEFA Congress in Athens.

"We have discussed the matter and it's not an option for us," Griffiths added. "This is an issue that is being driven by the English FA that raised its head again in Athens. We have made it clear to them that we have no interest in this at all."

Last month, FIFA president Gianni Infantino welcomed the possibility of a Team GB side at the Olympics, assuring the home nations that it would not affect their independent standing within world football's governing body.

Vivek Chaudhary covers FIFA and the financial side of the game for ESPN FC. Twitter: @viveksport

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