Police kick a Matildas fan out of the World Cup match for displaying the Iranian flag, and other Australian fans are furious
Video footage of a soccer fan being thrown out of the Brisbane stadium by police for displaying Iran’s national flag during Matildas’ quarter-final win over France has surfaced online.
The Australians made history by reaching the semifinals of a women’s World Cup for the first time after beating France (0-0) 7-6 on penalties in the longest penalty shootout in the tournament’s history.
A capacity crowd of nearly 50,000 in Brisbane went wild as the Aussies knocked out the fifth-ranked team in the world.
However, there was a bizarre moment during the match when a fan wearing a Matildas scarf was thrown out of the stands by two policemen for displaying an Iranian flag.
In the clip, the officers can be seen placing the man’s arms behind his back and escorting him away from his seat.
‘Tonight at Suncorp Stadium, a fan was ejected for displaying an Iranian flag during the #fifawwc quarter-final between France and Australia. I have no idea why,” tweeted journalist Mark Gottlieb, who captured the man’s vision.
Gottlieb posted a second clip showing the lead up to the incident, showing the man arguing loudly with stadium security.
A witness can be heard in the background of the clip saying, “It’s going to get complicated.”
According to official FIFA rules posted on the stadium’s website, fans are allowed to carry “small flags, banners and banners” as long as they are made of a non-flammable material.
However, “articles of a political, offensive, sexual, discriminatory or commercial nature are strictly prohibited and may result in expulsion from the stadium.”
Many fans feel the man ousted was difficult and took to Twitter to express their outrage.
‘Unless there’s something else we missed, this is absolutely ridiculous. Should be elevated to @fifacom @fifawwc – good luck trying to stage a Men’s World Cup with this attitude Australia’ one fan posted.
“This has been the sorry state of affairs with security at Suncorp Stadium for many years,” said another.
According to FIFA rules, fans are allowed to bring “small flags, banners and banners” to matches as long as they are made of flammable material.
The Matildas are already in the World Cup semifinal against England
‘What happened to freedom of expression?’ wrote a third.
Others thought the cops did the right thing in removing the man.
‘He needed to be removed. Correct call. The football game should not be politicized. No matter how ‘cool’ you think you are at protesting oppression, think of the consequences!’ replied a fan.
“I don’t see anything wrong with the conclusion of this video,” said another.
The Matildas will now face England in the World Cup semi-final on Wednesday night in Sydney, after the European champions beat Colombia 2-1.