Sophie Wilkinson | Contributing Editor | Thursday, 17 September 2015

National Football Player Banned From Playing In Tournament By Husband

National Football Player Banned From Playing In Tournament By Husband

The Debrief: Iranian captain Niloufar Ardalan isn’t allowed to go because her husband refuses to give her permission…

When it comes to football, the dirty laundry we’re used to seeing aired comprises sleazy stories of jumped-up overpaid blokes cheating on their wives or filming sex sessions with underpaid women. But in Iran, sexual politics are so ridiculous that their female football team’s captain, Niloufar Ardalan, can’t even attend the Asia Games.

Why? Her husband wants her to be at home for their son’s first day at school. And the law in Iran require husbands to give permission for their wives to travel abroad. If a woman is unmarried? If she’s under 18, her father gives the permission.

Only if she is unmarried and over 18 is she allowed to travel abroad without permission. And considering the average age of women getting married for the first time in Iran is 22, that doesn’t leave a lot of time for women to go on their travels.

Niloufar has spoken out against her husband’s restrictions. ‘This is the first time such Asian championships are being held and I had participated in all training camps by the national team. But I will miss the tournament because my husband is opposed to me travelling abroad,’ the 30-year-old told Iran’s Nasim Online news agency, The Guardian reports.

‘This tournament was very important for me and as a Muslim woman I wanted to hold my country’s flag high, I wasn’t going there to have fun. I just wanted to fight for my national flag. The national team needs me but I’m not able to join them.’

The thing is, so what if she was going just to have fun? In an ideal world, a woman should travel regardless of what she wants to do abroad… even if she just wants to go to Magaluf and get trollied.

And unfortunately for Niloufar, she has no right to divorce her husband under marriage law in Iran.

With Stone Age rules like this, you kind of wonder how Iran even got around to letting women out of the house long enough to play a game of football.

You might also be interested in:

5 Reasons You Need To Watch A Girl Walking Home Alone At Night

Little Mix Help Iranian Woman To Defy A Whole Bunch Of Laws

Here’s Why The World Is Talking About #ReyhanehJabbari This Morning

Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson

Tags: Around The World, Iran, FFS News, Sports, Sexism