June 24, 2009

Banned for life from soccer

I know some of you will regard this as a bonus to the players rather than a punishment, but let's just pretend for a few moments that the rest of you regard soccer as a real sport and not something that only six-year-olds should play.

Four of the six Iranian soccer players who were brave enough to wear green armbands during the World Cup qualifier in Seoul a week ago have been forcibly retired from playing soccer. When they returned to Iran after the game, their passports were taken from them, and they have been banned from media interviews.

One of the players, Ali Karimi, is widely regarded as Iran's best footballer. Karimi refused to take off his green armband through the entire game, despite being ordered to do so. Karimi joined Persepolis FC in 2008 because of his love for Iran, despite international attempts to recruit him to more prestigious teams. Karimi previously played for Bayern Munich. He is an amazingly fast midfielder with a lightning foot.

Two of the other banned players currently play for other Bundesliga teams. The fourth plays for Leicester City, an English FC.

Bundesliga and The Football League should step up immediately and demand the release of these fine players. I normally wouldn't encourage sports leagues to get involved in government, but the government had to go and stick their noses into soccer. 

Posted by: Alice H at 12:47 PM | No Comments | Add Comment
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