Spectator who stormed World Cup match 'will NOT face legal action

‘I am free!’: Spectator who stormed onto the pitch at Portugal v Uruguay waving an LGBT flag and wearing a Superman t-shirt demanding ‘Respect for Iranian women’ will NOT face legal action

  • Mario Ferri stormed onto the pitch during the Portugal v Uruguay match 
  • The activist held up a Pride rainbow flag to protest Qatar’s anti-LGBT laws 
  • He also wore a t-shirt which said ‘Save Ukraine’ and ‘Respect Iranian women’
  • Ferri has since announced he will not be facing any legal action for his stunt

A pitch invader who disrupted a World Cup group-stage match between Portugal and Uruguay with a rainbow flag said he will not face legal action.

During the Group H match on Monday, activist Mario Ferri ran onto the pitch at the Lusail Stadium in Qatar wearing a Superman T-shirt bearing the words ‘Save Ukraine’ on the front and ‘Respect for Iranian woman’ on the back.

Security officials chased after Ferri, who was also holding a rainbow-coloured flag, before he was escorted away.

 Mario Ferri – who stormed the pitch during Portugal v Uruguay – will not face legal action

Ferri, who is described in his Instagram bio as a footballer and influencer, updated his followers on Tuesday saying ‘I am free’.

‘So many emotions right now. No legal consequence I am free,’ Ferri’s Instagram story – translated using an online translator – read on Tuesday.

In a post on Instagram, the activist wrote: ‘I’M BACK. I’ll call it ‘THE LAST DANCE’ my last run on a playing field, I wanted to send some IMPORTANT messages to me that I’ve lived on my skin in the past months.’

Ferri revealed the news on his Instagram page with a lengthy caption (pictured above)

The pitch invader also took to his Instagram stories to explain how he was ‘free’ (above) 

Ferri went on outline those ‘important messages’ – referencing the plight of Iranian women, the controversial attitude at Qatar 2022 towards LGBTQ+ support, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

He said: ‘1) A message for Iran where I have friends who are suffering, where women are not respected… THE WORLD MUST CHANGE, we can do it together with STRONG gestures, that come from the heart, WITH COURAGE. 

‘2) FIFA banned rainbow captains bands and human rights flags on the stands, they blocked everyone, BUT NOT ME, like a Robinhood 2.0 I brought the message of the PEOPLE. We want a free world that laughs f***s all races and all the ideas. 

‘3) SAVE THE UKRAINE. I spent a month at the war in Kiev as a volunteer and saw how much that people were suffering. WE WANT PEACE UK️ IN UKRAINE, GLORY TO UKRAINE.

He was bundled away by security after storming onto the pitch during the match on Monday

Ferri dropped the Pride flag on the middle of the pitch as he was chased by security (above)

‘Thank you for all the messages of love that I receive from the world, from Iran and Ukraine. Breaking the rules if done for a good cause is NEVER A CRIME.’ 

Ferri’s Instagram Stories show him in Qatar ahead of Portugal’s showdown with Uruguay – later he shared footage from the stands during the game, zooming in on Cristiano Ronaldo with the caption ‘eccolo il mio dio’ or ‘here is my god’. 

Ferri has a history of pitch invasions, entering the pitch during Belgium and USA’s 2014 World Cup knock-out match, once again wearing his Superman T-shirt but with the words ‘Save Favelas Children’ on it.

When Napoli played Juventus in 2017, he also made an appearance, with his Instagram referencing the time he threw a scarf in the face of Argentina striker Gonzalo Higuain.

After running around the pitch for a few minutes, the demonstrator was led away by security 

Homosexuality is illegal in Qatar and anyone found participating in same-sex sexual activity can be punished with up to seven years in prison.

In September of this year, a young Iranian woman called Mahsa Amini died after falling into a coma after serving a detention period by morality police because of an ‘improper hijab’, which sparked protests globally. 

Ferri appears to have carried out other activism work in the past, his Instagram page containing multiple posts from Ukraine earlier this year, commenting on the Russian invasion and the plight of the people there.

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