Iran angered by Nike football boot ban

Сборная Ирана за несколько дней до ЧМ-2018 осталась без… бутс

Iran's football coach Carlos Queiroz has slammed Nike over the rejection of the firm to supply his team with footwear for the opening match against Morocco on Friday.

An ESPN report from Moscow said the Nike decision had left Iranian soccer officials baffled, noting that the United States company had supplied the team at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil when similar sanctions were in effect.

Although similar sanctions were in place at the 2014 World Cup, Nike had no issues supplying the team in Brazil.

There is some confusion among the Iranians, however, because Nike has supplied the team with gear in the past when the country was subjected to USA sanctions - including the 2014 World Cup.

"It has been a source of inspiration for us", Mr Queiroz told British broadcaster Sky Sports.

The Nike moves comes at a time of tense relations between Washington and Tehran, with US President Donald Trump last month pulling out of the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement and re-imposing sanctions it had previously waived. Everybody is aware about the sanctions.

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Some of Iran's players are understood to have asked non-Iranian players from their club teams to loan them boots, while others are said to have acquired them from friends or gone out to buy their own footwear in the shops.

"They should come out and apologize because this arrogant conduct against 23 boys is absolutely ridiculous and unnecessary", Queiroz said. "We know their team very well but I suspect they know very little about us".

Queiroz's side also face Spain and Portugal in the first phase.

Iran's jerseys are made by rival manufacturer Adidas, though the German company does not sponsor the team; they sold the uniforms to the Iranian federation.

"We are only managers and footballers, and should not get involved in such matters".

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