Status: 11/21/2022 3:09 p.m
Iran’s national team have refused to sing the national anthem before their opening game against England. Many see this as a sign against the government. The state broadcaster interrupted the transmission – the players face consequences.
The players of the Iran national team did not sing the national anthem in the World Cup opener against England. Iranian activists see it as a gesture of support for the nationwide protests in the country. Before the game against England, they had hoped for a declaration of solidarity from the players.
Captain offered condolences to families
The Iranian state broadcaster interrupted the live broadcast at the anthem. The players could now face consequences. There had been speculation in Iran that they might be banned if they remained silent at the anthem.
Iranian captain Ehsan Hajsafi had expressed his condolences to the grieving families of the victims in Iran. The team has to accept that the conditions in the country are not good and the people are not happy. The players are aware of that.
Apparently 360 dead
According to estimates by human rights activists, at least 360 people have been killed in the nationwide protests in Iran so far. Iranian striker Mehdi Taremi said before the tournament that the team in Qatar did not want to be influenced by the protests at home. “We also have other responsibilities towards Iranian society, but here our focus is on football,” he said.