Since the announcement of the draw for the groups for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, one of the games that has attracted the most attention has been the duel between the United States national team and its Iranian counterpart. The third match of Group B could decide which team goes to the round of 16 of the competition, but a post on social networks inflamed the spirits of the two countries in what we might call: the United States against Iran, when politics mixes with football. .
The United States Soccer Federation (US Soccer, as it is known in English) made it clear Sunday morning that it had decided to change the flag of Iran in a post on the group table, removing the symbol of the Republic of Iran that was designed in 1980 and represents the country’s current system. This change was shown on social networks and according to US Soccer was “in support of the women of that country who are fighting for their basic human rights”. A few hours later, the logo was added to the Iranian flag on all the grids of the federation.
The change affected the social networks of followers of both countries and even affected players from Team USA, with defenders Tim Rea and Walker Zimmerman being questioned by Iranian journalists about this fact, something they said they were not aware of and that. They were just focusing on the football part of this duel. More controversial, however, is the decision taken by the Iranian Football Federation.
The federation is demanding that the United States be expelled from the tournament, for failing to comply with FIFA’s Disciplinary Code, which states in Article 13 of it that “Anyone who threatens the dignity or integrity of a country, a person or a group of persons by using contemptuous words or actions will be punished (. ..) by a suspension that will last at least ten matches or for a specified period, or by any other appropriate disciplinary measure,” and only a few paragraphs above indicate that this punishment can be carried out even if the discrimination is off the field, such as on official social media.
FIFA could fine US Soccer for what it did in its publications, but the climate has intensified for a game that was already very dangerous on its own.
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