Tehran Times- The Football Federation Islamic Republic of Iran (FFIRI) will not be attending this year’s AFC Annual Awards gala after no Iranian players have been nominated for the award.
The AFC Annual Awards gala will be held in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, on December 1, 2016.
The Iranian federation will boycott the ceremony since the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has disregarded the federation’s achievements in the current year, FFIRI president Mehdi Taj said.
“We are not going to attend the ceremony after we understood Iran has no nomination in the AFC Annual Awards gala,” Taj wrote a letter to AFC president Sheikh Salman Bin Ibrahim Al-Khalifa
“Iran futsal made history in the 2016 FIFA Futsal World Cup and finished in third place in Colombia, while Ahmad Esmaeilpour won the competition’s bronze ball.
“The Iranian U-19 and U-16 football teams qualified for the World Cups as well as second place in the beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup in Dubai. Furthermore, the Iranian referees officiated in the Rio Olympic Games final match,” he said.
“The Iranian national football team sits top of Group A in the 2018 World Cup qualification and Team Melli has moved to 27th place in the recent FIFA rankings as well as first place in Asia. It’s the first time Iran football federation has achieved these successes simultaneously,” Taj concluded.