Iranian club cancel game due to opponents' Israeli coach | inside World Soccer

Iranian side Sepahan Isfahan have pulled out of a friendly with Partizan Belgrade because an Israeli, Avram Grant, manages the Serbian club.

Avram Grant attends a training session with his new club Partizan Belgrade
Avram Grant attends a training session with his new club Partizan Belgrade

Photo: Reuters

Partizan had been due to play the Iranians this Friday in Antalya, but have been informed their opponents will not take part any more.

The Iranian government does not recognise Israel as a country and refers to its government as the "Zionist regime".

In an explanation posted on Partizan's official website, Grant said that he had been told "unofficially" that he was the reason for the postponement, and described the move as "shameful".

The former Chelsea, Portsmouth and West Ham manager said: "I never mixed politics with sports. I had worked with many (Muslims) while I was in England, and I made friends with many of them."

Partizan had to move their usual winter training camp in Dubai to Antalya because of Grant's Israeli citizenship.

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