Afghanistan Women’s Soccer Team Embraces Culture with New Uniforms

Miranda Shelton, Reporter

The Afghanistan Women’s National Soccer Team has officially changed the game of soccer as we know it. They have partnered with the Danish sportswear company Hummel to create an official uniform that includes a built in hijab, which they released last week.


Before this jersey was released, many women who wear hijabs on the team were facing potentially dangerous situations during game time. Khalida Popal, team founder, explains in an interview with People Magazine that these powerful athletes were facing potential heat stroke when they were playing in warmer climates. They now have breathable, comfortable spandex options made by a world renowned uniform designer.


In the official video release of the uniforms, the mastermind behind them, Christian Stadil, owner of Hummel, passionately states, “If you want to create positive change for the women in Afghanistan, you have to meet them where they are. And many of these women, they have to– they want to wear hijab. That’s why we have chosen to make a very cool, very fashionable sports hijab for these great girls of Afghanistan.”


Many people around the world agree with Stadil. With the influx of support the team has gotten for their bold decision, it is clear this uniform is a massive step in the right direction for women of Islamic faith, and women’s sports in general. It was important to Popal that the they represented the women of their country, and a vast majority of them identify as Muslim. She believes the players need to have an option that not only supports but encourages their faith.


Vice President of the COD Muslim Student Association, Nausheen Amira Baig, seems to agree. “For all women in any sport, religion should never be a hinderance,” explains Baig. “[I] believe that this new jersey is an inspiration to Muslim women out there who wear hijab while aspiring to play sports and I applaud the Afghan women’s soccer team for their great accomplishment of making everyone feel accommodated and welcome.”