Nike won't supply Iranian national soccer team with shoes, citing United States sanctions

14 June, 2018, 07:41 | Author: Suzanne Horton
  • Nike to Withhold Iranian Soccer Team's Shoes for World Cup Over US Sanctions

Iran's national team was always going to face a hard challenge trying to compete with more-established nations at the World Cup, but suddenly there is a new obstacle for its players: what to put on their feet.

According to ESPN's Sam Borden, players on the Iranian team have been left to find shoes by other means - reaching out to non-Iran players that play club ball to loan them a few pairs, or just buying their own.

Nike confirmed in a statement they are unable to provide kit to Iran due to the USA sanctions now in place against the country.

Iran coach Carlos Queiroz believes his players have been brought closer together by Nike's decision to cut their supply of World Cup kit to the team but the acid test will come against Morocco on Friday (Jun 14).

Iran coach Carlos Queiroz expressed frustration at the decision.

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


"They should come out and apologize because this arrogant conduct against 23 boys is absolutely ridiculous and unnecessary", Queiroz said. "Players get used to their sports equipment, and it's not right to change them a week before such important matches", he said.

Last month, US President Donald Trump pulled Washington out of the deal that traded a lifting of worldwide sanctions for restrictions on Tehran's nuclear weapons programme.

In an attempt to clarify the situation, the Iranian soccer federation sent a letter to FIFA asking for an explanation, as well as assistance in resolving the issue.

Iran head into the match against Morocco in Group B on the back of a hard build-up to the tournament overall, after friendly matches against Greece and Kosovo were also cancelled.

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

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