A lot of people will go to fairly extreme measures to watch a game of sport, either coughing up a fair bit of dough or travelling the length of the country to do so.
But five women in Iran showed some real dedication when they went to watch a football match in Iran – pretty ingeniously disguised as men, sporting wigs and fake facial hair.
A post on Reddit explained that the photo was taken at the Azadi stadium, where fans were celebrating a trophy presentation ceremony for Persepolis as they received their 11th title as champions of Iran – and where women are banned from attending male football matches.
Persepolis beat Sepidrood 3-0 in the last game of the season, and thanks to that its players were awarded gold medals and the Persian Gulf Pro League trophy.
According to the Daily Sabah, 35 women trying to attend a Tehran derby between Esteqlal and Persepolis were detained back in March.
FIFA President Gianni Infantino – who was in Iran at the time and watched the game from the stands – reportedly said that he has been promised by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani that there are plans to soon allow women to attend football matches in the country.
Instagram posts from a user called zeinab_perspolisi_ak8 – who may or may not have been among the party – also show photos and videos of her dressing up in disguise as a man.
In one, she writes: “Mr. Rouhani was free to enter the women’s stadiums when you voted and the Hot talk was in the stadium. Now do not make a good move!”
These women also aren’t the only ones who have recently had to go to fairly desperate measures to catch a football game.
One determined man in Turkey was also banned from his football team’s stadium (we’re not sure why), but decided to not let that stop him from watching the match.
According to BirGun, the Denizlispor fan actually rented a crane for their game against Gaziantepspor, and watched it from there, above the stadium.
Thankfully, it seemed like it was money well spent for the fan of the TFF First League team (the second tier of Turkish football), as the Roosters ran out 5-0 winners against their opposition.
Mind you, it could well be a pretty expensive year for him as he’s banned for a year from the stadium – and no doubt he’ll have ruefully observed just how many empty seats there are that he could’ve sat in otherwise.
Featured Image Credit: Reddit user u/dareeza