TEHRAN – Supporters attending Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier between Iran and South Korea in Tehran have been asked to replace football chants with religious slogans at the 100,000-seat stadium, because the match is on a holy day – Ashura (Muharram 9th and 10th).

Black flags will be raised in the Azadi Stadium and some terraces will be set aside for bussed-in crowds of mourners, the BBC reported.


The match is being held on the first of two mourning days on the first month of Islamic calendar – Muharram.

South Korea will also wear black armbands as a sign of respect for the hosts.

Muslims mourn the start of a battle that ended on Ashura (Muharram 10th, 61AH), when Imam Hussain – one of most important figures in Islam – was martyred in the battle of Karbala, in today’s southern Iraq.


Seventy two of his followers and members of his family were also martyred in the Battle of Karabala.