Asked by a group of students about his stance on Ferdosipour and if the IRIB chief would facilitate his return to the state TV, Peyman Jebelli replied that the popular sportscaster had “spurned” the nation’s beliefs and the Islamic establishment, although he used to attract a huge audience for the national television.
“Now, do you expect me to go and beg him to return only to attract audience?” said the IRIB chief.
Ferdosipour was the host of a widely popular soccer show called “90,” which kept millions of Iranians tuned to Channel 3 of the national broadcaster on Monday nights for some two decades. He was not just the host but he had created, developed and taken the show to the pinnacle of popularity.
The show tried to uncover corruption in the world of Iranian soccer and openly criticized the interference of officials in the field to gain votes.
Despite his popularity, the show was stopped from being aired after Ferdosipour got into a dispute with his boss over the sports commentator’s brazen intervention in politics.
Ferdosipour also sided with the protestors during a wave of riots and unrest that erupted in the country following the death in police custody of the young Iranian woman, Mahsa Amini.