February 2nd, 2012


Just to clear things up

Egypt's Tragedy: This is not just soccer violence 

74 people dead.

It doesn't add up. Port Said's Masry soccer team won 3-1 against its long-time rival Ahly. In Port Said. It was a tough victory, one that Masry won with the support of its fans. The logical question would be, then, "Why would the Masry fans attack the minority of Ahly fans among them?"

From there on, the questions just don't stop. "Why did neither the governor of Port Said nor its security chief attend a game they both normally attend?"

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bolded for tl;dr.

al ahly always win. theyre like the bayern münchen of egyptian football. the "saboteurs" were sure ahly would win and that the pitch invasion that they planned to happen afterwards would be justified. just a bunch of angry football fans. but as one person put it, its like God (or fate, or w/ you believe in - or just pure luck) caused al-masry to win (3-1), just so people can see the insidiousness of this entire mess. because it doesnt add up, and we are not stupid.


Petition: Allow women to play football wearing headscarves

As elite soccer players compete in the qualifiers for this summer’s Olympics, some won’t even get a shot to show off their skills: female Muslim players can be automatically disqualified for wearing hijab (or headscarves) on the field.

The International Football Association Board (IFAB) — a governing body that sets the rules for the soccer trials leading up to the Olympics — has already disqualified the entire women’s Iranian national team after they tried to wear headscarves during their qualifying match. Players on the teams from Jordan, Palestine and Bahrain who choose to wear headscarves face the same fate.

For Rahaf Owais, a staffer at the Jordanian Football Association, the headscarf ban means the end of some young players’ careers before they even begin. After seeing some of Jordan’s players disqualified for expressing their religious beliefs, Rahaf started a petition on Change.org urging IFAB to reverse its ban on female soccer players wearing headscarves. 

IFAB has argued the headscarf ban is about safety, but the Iranian players who were disqualified were wearing wraps fastened with specially designed Velcro closures meant to eliminate any chance of neck injury. For players who choose to wear headscarves for religious reasons, the ban of even the safe, new head coverings is discrimination, plain and simple.

Earlier this week, the President of the Asian Football Confederation, Zhang Jilong, called on IFAB to reconsider the headscarf ban at its upcoming meeting on March 3. And now FIFA — the international federation that runs the World Cup and is a voting member of IFAB — has piled on and is urging IFAB to change the rule.

Zhang and the FIFA leadership have a lot of influence in the soccer world, so we know IFAB is paying attention to this issue. If enough people speak out by signing Rahaf’s petition, IFAB will be convinced the public wants them to reverse the ban and lift the discriminatory barrier keeping some women from competing in the Olympic trials.

Click here to stand up for Rahaf’s young players and sign her petition.