FIFA World Cup 2022: Players of the Iranian soccer team opted not to sing the national anthem during their opening match of the 2022 World Cup against England on Monday.
England defeated the Melli 6-2 in a Group B match at the Khalifa International Stadium thanks to goals from Jude Bellingham, Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford, Raheem Sterling and Jack Grealish. Porto striker Mehdi Taremi scored both of Iran’s goals during the match.
The Three Lions completely dominated the game, enjoying 79 percent of the ball possession. They registered seven shots on goal, compared to Iran’s three.
Why didn’t Iranian athletes sign the National Anthem at the 2022 FIFA World Cup game?
Players of the Iranian soccer team refused to sing the national anthem during their 2022 FIFA World Cup match due to their solidarity with the protesters back home. As Iran’s national anthem played during the game, cameras showed players standing, instead of signing.
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The people of Iran are currently protesting against the regime after the death of human rights activist Mahsa Amini in police custody in September. She was arrested for violating the ‘dress code’ for women.
Women first started the protest, but it quickly gained massive traction. According to a report by Hrana English, 419 people, including 60 children, have been killed in protests since September. The government has also arrested 17,451 people to prevent them from gathering.
Defender Ehsan Hajsafi became the first player to openly support the protest at the World Cup on Sunday. Speaking to the media, he said (via Indian Express): “My condolences to all the mourning families in Iran… We stand with them and share their pain…
We must accept that the conditions in our country are not adequate and our people are not happy… My people are sad and our presence here does not mean that we cannot be a voice for them or that we should not respect them”.
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Several soccer players have also changed their social media profile photos to a black space. His movement is receiving praise from people all over the world. Many fans flocked to the stadium to show their solidarity with the protest rather than to cheer on the team.
When is the next 2022 FIFA World Cup match?
Three matches of the 2022 World Cup are scheduled for November 22, 2022.