Iranian Queiroz tells the media: ‘Why don’t you ask Southgate about Afghanistan?’ | Iran

Iran coach Carlos Queiroz confronted a journalist at the end of a press conference after taking offense again at politics which once again dominated the conversation ahead of Friday’s match with Wales. In an animated exchange Queiroz suggested his colleagues tackle similar questions, taking the extraordinary step of asking BBC reporter Shaimaa Khalil why England manager Gareth Southgate is spared questions about the war in Afghanistan.

During the press conference Queiroz reiterated the importance of press freedom but clarified that he believed it was time for other managers to be questioned on wider issues around the world, saying it was “strange” that his rivals avoided such requests. He then took the BBC reporter to the task before being ushered out of the room. “Why don’t you ask the other coaches?” Queiroz said. “Why don’t you ask Southgate: ‘What do you think of England and the United States leaving Afghanistan and all the women alone?'”

Queiroz is not happy that Khalil asked Iranian striker Mehdi Taremi if he had a message for those protesting against their government following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini in police custody in September. Iranian players did not sing the national anthem ahead of Monday’s 6-2 defeat by England in support of protesters.

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Khalil asked Taremi, “Your fans have been here to cheer for you, your fans have come home to cheer for you, there are people on the street too, what is your message to the street protesters in Iran? “

Taremi said the Iranian team was under no pressure to sing the anthem after suggestions they could face reprisals if they remain silent before kick-off against Wales on Friday and the United States on Tuesday. Taremi then added: “I can’t change anything, thousands of other people like me can’t change anything.”

Queiroz was asked earlier whether it was “right for Western media and their journalists to keep asking Iranian footballers political questions?” The 69-year-old replied: “They have the right, the press has the right to ask the questions that they understand are the right questions. We have the right to give the right answers. It’s just a matter of mutual respect.

And why I didn’t ask “other coaches” similar questions… “ why didn’t you ask Southgate” about US , UK pull out of Afghanistan. Mr #Queiroz said. I tried to make the point I asked an Iranian player a question about his own country. As you can see below. I was stopped. pic.twitter.com/PmxIsCklOe

— shaimaa khalil BBC (@Shaimaakhalil) November 24, 2022

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And why didn’t I ask “other coaches” similar questions…”why didn’t you ask Southgate” about the US and UK withdrawal from Afghanistan. Mr #Queiroz She said. I tried to clarify the point, I asked an Iranian player a question about his country. As you can see below. I was stopped. pic.twitter.com/PmxIsCklOe

— shaimaa khalil BBC (@Shaimaakhalil) November 24, 2022

“There is no problem for us with your question, whatever it is. It’s important that if we answer what we want, you also have to respect it… There’s nothing wrong with the international press asking the questions it wants. It’s freedom of the press and we have the freedom to respond.”

Queiroz, who confirmed goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand would not be present due to concussion protocols, said his players were desperate to concentrate on football. “Let them play,” he said. “This is what they want to do. Play for the people of Iran. Players are not fans’ enemies. To make them the only people who need to give you answers about the problems of human beings all over the world you can judge it. I don’t think it’s right. I think it’s time to ask other coaches and players about other problems in the world, and I think there are other problems in the world.”

In regards to football, Queiroz has repeatedly referred to Wales fans as the Red Wall, describing the atmosphere they create akin to a “football party or show”, and he reserved special praise for Gareth Bale, who is intended to break the Welsh championship. men’s cap record by winning his 110th cap against Iran. Queiroz has admitted that Sir Alex Ferguson tried to sign Bale when the two worked together at Manchester United.

Gareth Bale during a training session on Thursday.
Gareth Bale during a training session on Thursday. Photograph: Jonathan Brady/PA

“He’s one of the best and right now he’s not only the best player in the team, but also the character, the leader within the pitch in terms of leading the team’s stability, managing the pace of the game,” said Queiroz of the captain of Wales. “He is a very intelligent player. I didn’t get the opportunity to work with him even though he was one of those players in those days [at Manchester United] we have tried to introduce. It is the image of “a team”.

Bale, who made his first-team debut for Wales as a 16-year-old against Trinidad & Tobago in 2006, scored an 82nd-minute penalty to earn a point against the United States in their group opener on Monday, but knows victory against Iran is crucial if they are to have a chance of progressing to the round of 16. “On a personal level it’s an amazing achievement, an honor to represent my country so many times, but it’s more important to try to get the win if possible and make it more special,” said Bale. . “We’re not just going to watch the England game and think it’s going to be a piece of cake just because England beat them 6-2, we’re not going to get sucked into it. It will be a difficult game.”

Bale said he hoped schoolchildren in Wales could watch their match for a “mini history lesson”. “Being a 10am kick-off in Wales, if I were one of the teachers, I’d let them watch the game,” said the 33-year-old with a smile.

Gareth Bale.

“I hope they do. It’s a historic moment in Wales for us to be at the World Cup. Some of the parents of kids I know want to watch the game but don’t want to take them out of school, so I think many schools will put the game in so they can encourage and support us. It’s a mini history lesson and hopefully a big break for all of them.”

Wales (3-4-3): Hennessey; Mepham, Rodon, B Davies; C Roberts,nRamsey, Ampadu, N Williams; Bale, Moore, James

Iran (5-4-1): H Hosseini; Moharrami, Pouraliganji, Cheshmi, M Hosseini,nMohammadi; Jahanbakhsh, Nourollahi, Karimi, Gholizadeh; Taremi

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Probable Wales-Iran formations

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Wales (3-4-3): Hennessey; Mepham, Rodon, B Davies; C Roberts, Ramsey, Ampadu, N Williams; Bale, Moore, James

Iran (5-4-1): H Hosseini; Moharrami, Pouraliganji, Cheshmi, M Hosseini, Mohammadi; Jahanbakhsh, Nourollahi, Karimi, Gholizadeh; Taremis

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