World Cup 2022: Iranians cheer for USA over homeland amid ongoing protests

Amid protests in Iran that have lasted close to three months, many Iranians were rooting for the United States to defeat their own country in Tuesday’s World Cup game.

Tuesday’s game was decisive for both teams. Iran would have advanced to the knockout stage with a draw, while the USMNT needed a win, which it got, to advance.

However, some protesters feel that an Iranian loss or draw now will hurt the regime on the world stage and fuel the protesters’ fight.

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In a coded phone interview with Fox News Digital Monday, an Iranian woman who identified herself as “Mahoora” and lives in southern Iran said, “It’s not just some people in Iran, it’s the majority of people in Iran who want the U.S. must win (on Tuesday) The silent majority [of Iranians] did not celebrate the regime team’s victory over Wales.”

The celebrations took place in many districts of Tehran, the capital of Iran, as well as in the densely populated cities of Mashhad, Isfahan and Karaj.

Supporters of the United States attend the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group B match between Iran and the United States at Al-Thumama Stadium in Doha on November 29, 2022.

Supporters of the United States attend the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group B match between Iran and the United States at Al-Thumama Stadium in Doha on November 29, 2022.
(Odd Andersen/AFP via Getty Images)

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Ali Safavi, a member of the foreign affairs committee of the Paris-based National Council of Resistance of Iran, issued the following statement:

“The jubilant reaction across Iran to the defeat of the regime’s football team tonight reflects first and foremost the degree to which the Iranian people loathe and detest the ruling mullahs and want to see it overthrown. They knew that the regime was trying to exploit the presence of its presence. team in the World Cup to overshadow the ruthless way it has cracked down on the nationwide uprising, which has left 660 protesters, including at least 60 children, dead and 30,000 (arrested). At no point in its 43-year rule, has the regime been so isolated in the eyes of the Iranian people, who are as determined as ever to topple it.”

A dejected Saman Ghoddos of Iran as his team is knocked out of the FIFA World Cup in the group stage during a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group B match between Iran and USA at Al Thumama Stadium November 29, 2022 in Doha, Qatar

A dejected Saman Ghoddos of Iran as his team is knocked out of the FIFA World Cup in the group stage during a FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group B match between Iran and USA at Al Thumama Stadium November 29, 2022 in Doha, Qatar
(Matthew Ashton/AMA/Getty Images)

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That The United States also trembled Iran over the weekend, when the American Football Association briefly scrubbed the Islamic Republic’s emblem from its flag in a social media post in support of the protesters. Iran called for the US to be banned from the tournament after the demonstration.

Fox News’ Benjamin Weinthal and Ryan Gaydos contributed to this report.

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