Foreign Ministry to back Iran football with all might

TEHRAN, Mar. 14 (MNA) – Saeed Khatibzadeh, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman, says the ministry will use all its capacities to safeguard Iran football’s rights in Asia.

Reacting to the recent decision adopted by the Asian Football Confederation to hand over the hosting of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers to Bahrain, Khatibzadeh said he had participated in a Sunday meeting to discuss the issue with Sports Minister Masoud Soltanifar, President of Football Federation Azizi Khadem, deputy Sports Minister Alinejad, and President of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of the Islamic Republic of Iran Reza Salehi Amiri.

The AFC’s decision to deprive Iran of hosting rights is political and does not relate to sports-related issues, said Khatibzadeh.

The remarks came after the AFC announced that it has chosen Bahrain to host the remaining matches of the Group C of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers as the body earlier opted for staging the matches in a centralized manner. This is while Iran was originally slated to host three of the matches against Bahrain, Iraq, and Hong Kong.

“The Ministry will deploy all its capacities to obtain the best result for Iran’s football,” he said, adding that the body backs footballers with all its might.

Earlier, Reza Salehi Amiri said that Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has sent a letter to FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

MAH/IRN 84263621

News Code 171084

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