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Iranian women sneak into match disguised as men

Ramin Rezaeian

Iran’s Ramin Rezaeian waves his country’s flag after beating Uzbekistan in their Asia Group A, 2018 World Cup qualifying soccer match at the Azadi Stadium in Tehran, Iran, Monday, June 12, 2017. Iran became the second team to qualify for the 2018 World Cup by beating Uzbekistan 2-0. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)


Although women aren’t technically banned from attending soccer games in Iran, it is quite common for them to be denied entry, made to sit in separate sections or even face prosecution.

Back in March of this year, 35 women were detained for trying to attend a game in Iran. So, women have to get creative and the latest tale involves fake beards, wigs and plenty of makeup...

Last Friday a group of five women disguised themselves as men and snuck into watch Persepolis play Sepidrood as the former were crowned champions of the Persian Gulf League at Azadi stadium in Tehran.

This isn’t the first time this has been reported either, as women often go to extreme lengths to watch their team in Iran.

Speaking to a local outlet, one of the woman had the following to say about their disguise.

“Why should I be scared? We women do not commit any crimes by going to stadiums. The law has not defined women’s presence at stadiums as a crime. They have, of course, detained a few women and they have given a written promise not to go back there again.”

Another revealed that men accompanied them to the stadium to make sure they got in and the security guards had no idea, but it became quite clear when they were in the stadium that they had been rumbled.

“We went through the first and second gates in a group, and no-one figured it out. But once we sat in the stands, everyone realized. They came over and took selfies with us, praising us for going. Another interesting thing is all of those who knew we were women did not shout anything rude throughout the match,” one of the woman told sports newspaper Khabar Varzeshi.

“Our goal is to keep going until they allow all women to go. We are doing this to say to the authorities that if they don’t let us in, we will keep going nonetheless, with or without beards.”

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