Iranian footballers ‘retired’ after match protest

German Football
By German Football June 25, 2009 05:23

Iranian footballers ‘retired’ after match protest


Image: AP

This is not directly related to German football, but I think its something that all football fans around the world should be concerned about.

Apparently, four Iranian footballers have been “retired” from the national side after protesting against the contested election result in the country during a match against South Korea.

Iran has refused to overturn the results of the controversial presidential poll which saw President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad re-elected despite a wave of public demonstrations and complaints that the June 12 election was rigged.

The players had drawn attention to the situation in Iran by wearing green armbands during last week’s World Cup qualifying match in Seoul. Green is the color used by opposition leader Mir Hossein Moussavi during his campaign for presidency and has been widely worn by supporters protesting since Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was announced the winner.

Six players wore the armbands during the first half of the match, returning in the second minus the accessories.

However, according to Iranian news reports, four players — Ali Karimi, 31, Mehdi Mahdavikia, 32, Hosein Ka’abi, 24 and Vahid Hashemian, 32 — have been “retired” from the sport following the gesture. The pro-government newspaper, Iran, reported the players had received the equivalent of a life ban.

Karimi is one of Iranian football’s best-known stars, having played for Bayern Munich. Ka’abi played for Leicester City for several months during the 2007/8 season. Hashemian and Mahdavikia play for Bochum and Eintracht Frankfurt.

Ahmadinejad is a known football fan, and has a keen interest in the national team’s affairs. On June 14, he compared protesters in Tehran to fans of a losing football team.

I think a more accurate comparison would be if the team was ruled to have lost the match by the referee even though it had scored more goals. As ridiculous as it sounds, that’s what the situation in Iran is like now.

German Football
By German Football June 25, 2009 05:23
Write a comment

No Comments

No Comments Yet!

Let me tell You a sad story ! There are no comments yet, but You can be first one to comment this article.

Write a comment

Only registered users can comment.

Store