Morocco’s Benzina Makes History With Hijab At Women’s World Cup.
When Nouhaila Benzina spotted the Muslim headscarf during Morocco’s match against South Korea on Sunday, she became the first player to wear one during a Women’s World Cup game.
After prior worries about player safety, FIFA removed its ban on hijab-wearing footballers about a decade ago.
Benzina, a 25-year-old Moroccan defender who plays club football in Morocco, ran out against South Korea in Adelaide to make history.
Benzina made social media posts about wearing a hijab in the run-up to the World Cup, but she has not spoken to Australian or New Zealand media about it.
She recently told Al Jazeera that it would be a proud occasion for her.
“Lots of work was done over many years, and thank God it had a positive result,” she said.
“We hope to play at a high level and honour Moroccans.”
Several other sports, including basketball, have repealed hijab bans in recent years, but it is still not permitted during official football matches in France.
Moroccan women, led by Frenchman Reynald Pedros, are competing in their first Women’s World Cup after finishing as runners-up in the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations.
Germany beat them 6-0 in their tournament opener, with Benzina remaining on the bench.