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Iran manager confronts BBC reporter: 'Why don't you ask Southgate about Afghanistan?'

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 24/11/2022 Sam Dean
Iran manager confronts BBC reporter: 'Why don't you ask Southgate about Afghanistan?' - TWITTER © TWITTER Iran manager confronts BBC reporter: 'Why don't you ask Southgate about Afghanistan?' - TWITTER

Carlos Queiroz confronted a BBC journalist after another press conference was dominated by questions over political issues in Iran.

Approaching the journalist at the end of his pre-match press conference to preview Friday’s game against Wales, the Iran head coach demanded to know why other managers, including England’s Gareth Southgate, do not face similar questions on political situations.

Footage captured by other journalists in the room showed an irritated but calm Queiroz saying to BBC reporter Shaimaa Khalil: “Why you don’t ask to Southgate these kind of questions?

“I am talking with you. I ask the pleasure to talk with you. I am asking one thing to you now, the press conference is finished. Do you think it is fair also to ask other questions to other coaches?

“That is the only question I make. Why don’t you ask the other coaches? Why you don’t ask Southgate ‘what do you think about England and the United States that left Afghanistan and all the women alone? Why don’t you ask that?”

Earlier, Queiroz had defended the rights of the free press after being asked a question, seemingly from a member of the Iranian media, about the “hostile western press”.

Also in the press conference, Iran striker Mehdi Taremi said he is not concerned about any consequences for him or his team-mates after they refused to sing the national anthem before their match against England. 

The refusal to sing has been widely regarded as an expression of support for anti-government protests in Iran.

“I don’t want to talk about political issues but I can give you a very short sentence because I respect you: No, we are not under any pressure,” said Taremi. “The fact is, we have come here to play football. 

“You do your work as a journalist, you ask questions. I think that this space, when it’s a space for sport and football, also journalists for football can be present here, so the fans can enjoy football. What is on the sidelines around it, I cannot change anything.”

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