STORY: Iran's national soccer team players have been dragged into a political crisis at home, pressured by protesters seeking to challenge the legitimacy of the country's clerical rulers to side with them publicly and condemn a deadly state crackdown.
Soccer fan Mariam Ispahani told Reuters she would "love to separate politics and religion from sport".
But others had stronger opinions, like Mohammed Ghafari who said he wished Iranian players "won't win because lots of people in Iran are suffering".
While a woman, who gave her name only as Rebecca, said she was torn because although the match-up is exciting for Iranian-Americans, "good people" in Iran "don't want this play to happen because they are so upset and they are losing loved ones."
The U.S. take on Iran in their World Cup Group B showdown on Tuesday (November 29).