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Afghan United: Hope through Football

"Afghan United" is an inspiring documentary that follows young Afghan refugees in Iran as they find hope and unity through participating in a Ramadan football tournament.

Keywords: Refugees, Iran, Football, Afghan Youth, Resilience, Ramadan tournament, Cultural Integration. Three words: 'Inspiring', 'Heartwarming', 'Realistic'.


"Afghan United: Hope Through Football for Refugees in Iran" is a captivating documentary directed by Al Jazeera. Released in 2019, it provides an intimate look at the determination and resilience of young Afghan refugees in Iran who come together to participate in a Ramadan football tournament.


The documentary follows a group of young Afghan refugees in Iran as they overcome numerous obstacles to compete in a football tournament during Ramadan. The narrative takes us on a journey of their preparation and determination, punctuated by the thrilling matches and the dramatic results that ensue.

More Film Analysis


The film utilises a realistic style, capturing the raw emotions of the young footballers. The depth of research is evident in the detailed portrayal of the refugees' lives, their struggles, and their passion for football. The exploration of the subjects is profound, revealing the healing power of sports in fostering hope and unity amidst adversity.

Historical and Factual Context

Iran hosts one of the largest refugee populations in the world, with a significant number of Afghan refugees. This documentary provides a unique glimpse into their lives, their cultural integration, and their use of football as a form of escapism and expression.

Key themes in the film

  • Resilience of the human spirit
  • The role of sports in fostering unity and hope
  • The struggles and triumphs of refugees
  • Cultural integration and acceptance

Film Comparisons

The documentary is reminiscent of "Children of Heaven" in its portrayal of the lives of young people in Iran, yet it offers a unique perspective by focusing on refugees and their passion for football.

Noteworthy Moments

One significant moment in the documentary is the climax of the Ramadan football tournament, where the emotions of the young players reach a crescendo, capturing the essence of their journey.


This documentary has been lauded for its realistic portrayal of the refugee experience. Audiences praised the film's ability to humanize the often faceless concept of refugees, while critics commended its exploration of football as a unifying force.


"Afghan United: Hope Through Football for Refugees in Iran" is a moving and insightful documentary that provides a unique perspective on the refugee experience. It's a must-watch for anyone interested in human stories, football, and cultural integration.

More film information:


  • IMDB score: N/A
  • Rotten Tomatoes score: N/A
  • Metacritic score: N/A
  • Film festival awards: N/A



  • Young Afghan refugees: The main subjects of the documentary, these individuals showcase resilience and passion for football.



  • Iran: The setting of the documentary and home to a large population of Afghan refugees.

Key Questions Raised by the Film:

  • How does sports, particularly football, aid in the cultural integration of refugees?
  • What are the challenges faced by young Afghan refugees in Iran?
  • How does the passion for football help these refugees cope with their circumstances?

I wonder what the film would be in another art form

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  1. If this film was a famous book, which one would it be? "The Kite Runner" by Khaled Hosseini, for its portrayal of Afghan youth overcoming adversity.
  2. If this film was a famous song, which one would it be? "Wavin' Flag" by K'naan, a song that became an anthem of hope during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
  3. If this film was a famous piece of art, which one would it be? Picasso's "Guernica", representing the resilience amidst chaos and suffering.
  4. If this film was a famous celebrity, who would it be? Cristiano Ronaldo, symbolising the power of football and the importance of resilience.
  5. If this film was a color, which one would it be? Green, representing hope, renewal, and the football field.
  6. If this film was a music style, which one would it be? Hip Hop, a genre that often voices struggles and resilience.