If you aren’t aware by now, the World Cup is well on the way. Tens of millions of people everyday tune in to watch the top players in football (soccer) represent their nation in one of the most watched sports events worldwide.
But did you know that the United States offers a visa for athletes with skills and talents that put them at the top of their sport?
This is called the EB-1 green card for sporting individuals. Now, you do not have to be a Ronaldo or Messi (for those who consider them to best in the world) to qualify for this visa. If you are an athlete of great renown at the national, international, or world level then you may qualify for this visa.
Proving your talents is the difficult can be done in a number of ways. It would be highly recommended to seek the guidance of a qualified and experienced immigration attorney to help you with this process. But the main idea would be to show that you are both famous and widely known at any of the three mentioned levels, and that you are a great athlete.
The United States has made a list of requirements that a petitioner of an EB-1 visa must meet. Such as:
“Evidence of published material about you in professional or major trade publications or other major media”
The nice thing about the EB-1 visa is that you do not have to have an employer to petition for this visa. This means that you do not have to scouted by one of the MLS clubs to qualify. You may petition for this visa yourself.
Let’s use the World Cup, specifically the Iranian men’s national football team and its athletes as an example of someone who may qualify for an EB1 visa.
In the World Cup in Russia, Iran’s goalie, Alireza Beiranvand who plays for the football club Persepolis in the Iran Premier League, made headlines with his flashy saves, putting some of his saves in league with great saves from some of the world’s best goalies such as Germany’s Manuel Neuer.
The Iranian defense also deserves credit for a wonderful performance. Their defense held, giving up few goals even against some of the world’s best national teams, such as Spain and Portugal. The defensive line of Ramin Rezaeian, Morteza Pouraliganji, Roozbeh Cheshmi, Ehsan Hajsafi in this tournament played as well as the defenses of some of the best football clubs in Europe, such as Barcelona, Chelsea, Borussia Dortmund, and Paris Saint-Germain.
The way that the Iranian Defense moved as a unit, the chemistry they showed, and the discipline they had could be compared to two of the best defenders in the world: Miranda and Diego Godin. These two compliment each other and have become the backbone to their world renown football club, Atletico Madrid.
The forwards: Alireza Jahanbakhsh, Masoud Shojaei, Vahid Amiri, and Karim Ansarifard dazzled the crowd with their skill and their ability to push the ball forward and attack the Portuguese defense in their final game of the world cup. Such display of skill is often seen by attacking power houses such as Manchester United, Bayern Munich, or Real Madrid.
Finally, there is Sardar Azmoun, Iran’s star. The way he was able to get behind the opponent’s defenses and help generate offense has made him a very noticeable play maker on the world stage. His playmaking skills are as dazzling as German international star Mesut Ozil, who is both a star for the German team and his regular club Arsenal.
A lot of the credit also has to go to the Iranian National manager, Carlos Quieroz. He is a brilliant manager that has coached some of the worlds best known players such as: Zinedine Zidane, Christiano Ronaldo, Luís Figo and David Beckham. He is the longest active manager for the Iranian national team, assisting them in qualifying in back to back World Cup tournaments.
These stars will inspire other young Iranian children to play better than their idols. And these young Iranian children will be scouted by football clubs all over the world, possibly even being the best player in growing clubs such as F.C. Copenhagen in Denmark or Ajax football club in the Netherlands.
Iranian Football Team showed outstanding performance in both Iran v. Spain and Iran v. Portugal. Some may state that referees were not all so fair to Iranian teams, specially in Iran v. Spain. Some may say, Iranian Team Melli deserved to go up in group B. Iranian team played with Spain first ( one of the best players in the world). Iranian Goal keeper ( Alireza Beiranvand) showed outstanding work, all other Iranian Players did. In , Iran v. Portugal, Iranians had corrected all the errors and mistakes they did in playing with Spain. They all did an outstanding performance and all deserve an extraordinary immigrant Visas to be granted.
Our office would gladly like to assist any athlete who believes that they may qualify for an EB1 visa, or any other visa that they may qualify for.
In order to be sure that you meet the requirements for an immigrant Visa and/ or to properly file a petition, it is advisable to seek legal guidance from an experienced immigration attorney.
This is an immigration legal blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advise. For further information please contact the law offices of attorney Ramona Kennedy.
Ramona Kennedy (Attorney) received her Jurisprudence Doctorate in America and is a licensed attorney in California (USA). Ramona Kennedy is a member of American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Ramona Kennedy is fluent in English and Farsi (reading & writing) & speaks Azeri Turkish.
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