The Argentinian football teams’ decision to pull out of a planned friendly match with Israel is a resounding avant-garde stance on the Palestine-Israel conflict, one that sets a precedent for the reclaiming of the dialogue by the people rather than toothless international bodies like the UN. The first sports boycott of its kind, it is an indication of solidarity with Palestine and a tacit rejection of the US-Israeli instigated violence in Gaza, both an accomplishment and a precedent for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement that seeks to isolate Israel.

It is also a testament to Argentinians holding their values in the face of the politicsation of the sport by Israel. Following the US moving its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, in a move to further bait the Palestinians, the right-wing sports minister, Miri Regev, had moved the match from its original venue to the disputed city of Jerusalem, and further politicising the match as the ‘70th anniversary celebrations of Israeli statehood.’

The cancelation has set the stage for broaching and challenging politics outside the domain of ineffectual myopic global bodies like the UNSC and into the arenas, where sport enthusiasts and audiences are indirectly impacted by such a stance and are free to reach their own conclusion. This move reclaims and re-presents the agency of the FIFA statutes and mainstreamed sports everywhere, as a new international forum that upholds the right to advocate for global ethics and values, building bridges between nations.

The Argentinian stance, bringing hope to millions of Palestinians who felt forsaken, is a declaration that the world does not condone to the state terrorism undertaken by the Israeli government and backed by the Trump administration. A testament to the influence of football icons like Lionel Messi – an inspiring figure in the despairing Gaza Strip – such a demonstration of solidarity of players and celebrities upholding international law has a ripple effect that can hopefully translate into bringing about change.