Iran furious after Greece friendly called off

Iran furious after Greece friendly called off

Following the recent cancellation of Greece’s proposed friendly against Iran, the Iranian Football Federation has threatened to submit an official complaint to FIFA.

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Originally, Greece and Iran were meant to lock horns in a pre-FIFA World Cup friendly in Istanbul on June 2, but taking into account the heightened political tensions between Greece and Turkey after two Greek soldiers were captured at the Evros border, the game was called off. However, a furious Iran have issued a complaint, pointing out they won’t cooperate with Greece until FIFA take their feelings into consideration:

“The Iranian Football Federation deeply regrets the lack of respect and morality shown by the Hellenic Football Federation.

We will report the incident to FIFA and use all legal opportunities possible to receive compensation for the financial losses suffered.

In addition, we suspend all cooperation with the Hellenic Football Federation until FIFA examines our complaint.”

Interestingly, Iran tried to set up a match against Kosovo after the game with Greece was cancelled, but their attempts were in vain.

In response, the Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) released this following statement:

“The Hellenic Football Federation was surprised to learn of the style and content featured in the Iranian Football Federation’s statement to the media concerning the cancellation of a friendly match between the two nations. In order to restore the facts, we emphasize these points:

  • In addition to the official acceptance of a friendly match to be held in Istanbul on June 2, 2018, no binding document was signed by the Greek party;

  • The issues of national sensitivity and morals far outweigh any form of sporting event;

  • For a number of months, there was the threat that this match in Istanbul could be cancelled and the Iranians were well aware of this possibility, without the Hellenic Football Federation being responsible;

  • Since then, the Hellenic Football Federation was open to any alternative option for the match to be conducted, carrying the sole aims of defending its interests and sponsors.

In conclusion: with the match called off, the Hellenic Football Federation is the biggest loser, as the financial interests were not adhered to and the national team’s preparation for the Nations League has been disrupted.

These events will be submitted to FIFA.”

More developments are expected in the coming days.

by Shaun Nicolaides
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