Iranian Clubs Likely to Withdraw from AFC Champions League

Iran Football Federation Vice President Mehdi Taj said the Iranian teams will withdraw from AFC Champions League if the confederation change the venues of Iran and Saudi Arabian teams matches.

Following the weeks-long diplomatic dispute between Iran and Saudi Arabia, AFC Competitions Committee decided to amend the schedule for the 2016 AFC Champions League.

The AFC says it set a March 15 deadline for “a return to normal relations” otherwise all matches between teams from the countries will be played at neutral venues.

“As we’ve already said, Iran is a safe country and we have no problem to host the ACL matches,” Taj said.

“I think the confederation is making a dangerous decision. If AFC change the venues, the Iranian teams will pull out of the competition,” he added.

“We don’t accept to play in neutral venues and believe that it’s a political decision to change the venues,” Taj said.