Wales: Football fans from South Asian community uniting to create Amar Cymru supporters group

Amar Cymru Wales fans group set to launch this week before start of Euro 2020; Matchday-going football fans from across Wales' South Asian community uniting to support national teams with launch-event set to take place when Wales travel to Rome for showdown with Italy in final Group A game

during the UEFA Euro 2016, Group B match at the Stade Felix Bollaert-Delelis, Lens. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Thursday June 16, 2016. See PA story SOCCER England. Photo credit should read: Mike Egerton/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use only. Book and magazine sales permitted providing not solely devoted to any one team/player/match. No commercial use. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information.
Image: Wales fans in Lille celebrate Gareth Bale's goal against England at Euro 2016

South Asian football supporters from across Wales are uniting to launch the Amar Cymru fans group ahead of Euro 2020, Sky Sports News understands.

Sky Sports News has learned discussions have been going on for some time between matchday-going Welsh fans and various stakeholders across the game, with a focus on growing interest in the Wales National Teams across all communities.

Fans of every major club in Wales will be part of the new group, which is in part inspired by the Apna England supporters' group for South Asian heritage football fans and allies that follow the Three Lions.

Aaron Ramsey playing for Wales 1:15
Andy King says Aaron Ramsey's connection with Gareth Bale will be crucial for Wales at Euro 2020

Apna England, formed in 2019, have a core membership drawn from affiliated groups supported by the Fans for Diversity campaign, a jointly-funded initiative led by the Football Supporters' Association and Kick It Out that promotes diversity and inclusion in football. Apna England representatives have been working closely with Amar Cymru's founder members in recent weeks to help the new group get up and running.

Amar Cymru means "Immortal Wales" with the word amar derived from the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit. Amar is also a popular name across South Asia and the Middle East with variations of the word used in dozens of languages across the continent.

The group is set to formally launch before Wales' Euro opener against Switzerland in Baku on Saturday, with a supporter event likely to place ahead of the game against Italy on June 20.

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Gareth Bale said he was excited to play in front of Wales fans in their Euro 2020 warm-up match against Albania in Cardiff

This Saturday also marks a year since the Football Association of Wales (FAW) appointed Jason Webber as Equality, Diversity, Inclusion and Integrity Manager. Speaking a year ago, Webber, who had a long spell working for Show Racism the Red Card, vowed to help the FAW "increase the representation and inclusion of ethnic minorities at all levels of the game".

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Ahead of March's World Cup qualifier against Belgium, the FAW helped successfully launch The Rainbow Wall supporters group for LGBTQ+ supporters and allies to join together and follow Wales.

That group emerged following discussions with the Football v Homophobia campaign and other LGBT+ stakeholders in football.

NEWPORT, WALES - AUGUST 31: Jessica Fishlock of Wales in action during the Women's World Cup qualifier between Wales Women and England Women at Rodney Parade on August 31, 2018 in Newport, Wales. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images) 0:45
Reading and Wales midfielder Jess Fishlock, who was recently appointed a Stonewall Sport Champion, says it's important for all people to call out acts of discrimination, if society is to progress

Speaking earlier this year, The Rainbow Wall co-founder Brandon Gregory said: "It's about building a sense of community and togetherness and you don't have to be part of the LGBT+ community to join.

"You can be a straight person who wants to support the cause and what we stand for. It makes me immensely proud to be Welsh and be part of something that I really care about."

Wales 0-0 Albania 2:48
Highlights of the international friendly match between Wales and Albania

The Wales squad travels to Baku on Monday ahead of their Euro 2020 Group A opener against Switzerland on Saturday. The Dragons remain in the Azerbaijani capital for their match with Turkey on June 16 before heading to Rome to play Italy four days later.

Wales head into the tournament off the back of their seventh clean sheet in eight home internationals following a goalless draw with Albania at the weekend.

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