By Farrokh Hesabi

Hosting right depends on payment of TV broadcasting right

August 24, 2021 - 9:32

TEHRAN – The football federation is determined to make it possible for Iran national team to host their home matches of the third round of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers in the country.

Iran will start their training camp form Aug.25; however, it is still unclear whether Iran can play their home matches on their home soil.

There are some reasons that the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has not still announced the host venue for Iran’s home matches. The Covid-19 issues are still in question in the country; however, the Football Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran (FFIRI) has announced that most of the problems in the way of Iran’s hosting have been solved except for one issue that seems a big obstacle.

Based on the comments of the FFIRI’s officials, from president Shahabeddin Azizi Khadem to the secretary-general and some members of the FFIRI’s Board of Directors, the issue of hosting the World Cup qualifiers now only depends on the payment of the TV broadcasting right of the competitions by Iran’s radio and television known as the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB) to the AFC.

Iran lost its hosting right in the second round of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers due to what has been mentioned by the AFC as commercial, broadcasting, and logistics problems.

The FFIRI does not want to host the rivals outside Iran for the second time in a row. So far, Iraq have announced their home match against Iran at the 2022 World Cup qualification Round 3 will take place in Doha, Qatar, as a neutral venue.

The Iranian football federation has taken measures to solve the problems related to the lighting or high-speed internet of Azadi Stadium so far. However, the TV and media right is still a problem that the directors of the IRIB should solve.

Mirshad Majedi, a member of the FFIRI’s Board of Directors, spoke bluntly in this regard: “If the money for the broadcasting right is not paid to the AFC within the next few days, we will lose the hosting right of our matches. I hope that, with the measures taken by the officials of the IRIB, in coordination with the football federation, the requested amount by the AFC will be paid so we can host our rivals at the Azadi Stadium, like the previous years.”

Iran will start the 2022 World Cup qualification Round 3 with a match against Syria on Sept. 2.

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