There was a heated exchange among somebody at the World Cup and the media and for once it didn’t involve Qatari World Cup officials. Instead, Carlos Queiroz, manager of the Iran national team, got into it with a Sky News reporter who asked the Portuguese man if he was okay with representing a nation that’s repressing women’s rights.
— Reza Mohaddes (@rmohaddes) November 15, 2022
When asked the question, Queiroz first responded by asking how much Sky would pay him to answer that question and he would do it after the World Cup if it’s a “good offer.”
Queiroz responded: “How much you pay me to answer that question? How much you pay me?
“Talk to your boss and at the end of the World Cup I can give you the answer if you make me a good offer.”
Then Queiroz deflected by playing the “whataboutism” game and telling the reporter to look at England and their current issues with migrants and immigration.
“Think about what happened in your country with immigration,” he said, leaving the room to head onto the training pitch.
The question was asked amid protests taking place in Iran after 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died while in custody by Iran’s morality police for allegedly wearing a loose Hijab.
Her death sparked protests about Iran’s oppression of women and since then, 300 people have been killed while nearly 15,000 have been imprisoned by the nation for taking part in protests.
Within Iran soccer, players wore black jackets with no national colors or emblems during the national anthem in a September friendly in support of the protests while goalscorer Sardar Azmoun refused to celebrate and posted/deleted an Instagram story that said players were forbidden from speaking out. In addition, Iranian soccer stars Ali Daei and Javad Nekounam declined invites to attend the World Cup.
This is Queiroz’s third World Cup as Iran manager. He coached them from 2011-19 and then came back a few months ago after unsuccessful spells in Colombia and Egypt. Iran is in Group B and will face England, Wales, and the United States. That game against the USMNT will be the final one of the group stage and will take place November 29 at 2 PM ET.