Big blow for Omid team.

Iran Olympics football Team U 23, Omid Team received a setback when it was confirmed that 3 of its top players will not be competing in the finals of the AFC U23 championship which is also the qualifiers for the Rio 2016 Men Olympics Games Football competition.

Sardar Azmoun, Saeed Ezatollahi and Alireza Jahanbakhsh will not be part of the squad that will be competing in Doha in two weeks time.

Habib Kashani , the head of Team Omid said “These 3 players are registered as professionals in European club. We were unable to obtain the release from their respective clubs. The competition for the Olympics are not played in FIFA days and as such these clubs are not obliged to release their players for their national representative teams. All these clubs will be either busy in their own league competitions or preparing for the league as the case with the two Russian based players are.”

Sardar Azmoun, Saeed Ezatollahi  (FC Rostov) and Alireza Jahanbakhsh (AZ Alkmaar) are also in Team Melli squad in addition to playing for the U23 team. Their  quality and European experience is considered vital for the Omid team which is trying to qualify for the Olympics for the first time in 40 years. Kashani , however, played down the significance of the 3 players absence and said that their team has been mainly competing and training without the 3 players most of their campaign and their absence for the final will not produce a shock for the team.

Iran, under coach Mohammad Khakpour,  will be playing in Group A with host Qatar , Syria nd China. Omid’s first match will be on 12th January against Syria U23.