The growing post-match trend of demanding jerseys is becoming a burden for players who want to please all but simply cannot

“Kyra can I have your shirt please?” begs one sign, awash with green and gold glitter, at the front of the crowd at the Matildas’ Olympic qualifiers. A young girl holds it out, desperate for Kyra Cooney-Cross to notice it and oblige. Only Cooney-Cross does not just have one request for her jersey, there are swathes of young children with similar signs and beseeching looks.

It is a trend that has been slowly building for a while, having made its way over from men’s sport, where there is often little chance of even getting within 10 metres of a player, let alone taking home their jersey. But every now and then, a player spotted a sign and handed it over – creating a picture perfect moment that was destined to go viral.

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