Tag: Peykan

Analysis of Reza Enayati’s Tenure in Iranian Football

Failure stories.

Last year, Iran’s Omid football team faced a significant setback when they were eliminated from the Asian Olympic football competition qualifiers after a surprising defeat against Hong Kong. This loss dashed their hopes of advancing to the next stage of the Olympic qualifiers. The team’s head coach, Reza Enayati, was a controversial choice due to his lack of coaching experience. His appointment came with the backing of several officials, including Team Melli’s head coach, Amir Ghalenoei. Unfortunately, Enayati’s inexperience was glaringly evident both in his squad selection and his management during the qualifiers. Despite having a roster filled with promising young talents, some of whom were already part of Iran’s senior team, Enayati’s tactical shortcomings led to the team’s early exit against a modest Hong Kong side.

The aftermath of this failure was met with widespread disappointment from both the media and fans, who demanded accountability from the Football Federation Islamic Republic of Iran (FFIRI). However, no significant actions were taken, and the pervasive impunity in Iranian football continued unabated. Surprisingly, despite this major setback, Enayati was soon appointed as the head coach of Peykan Football Club, one of Tehran’s oldest and most prestigious teams. This decision was perplexing, especially given Peykan’s history of developing young players for Iran’s national teams at various levels.

Enayati’s tenure at Peykan proved to be another disastrous chapter in his coaching career. Under his leadership, the team suffered relegation from the Premier League following a 0-2 defeat against Esteghlal in the final week of the season. This relegation marked a significant blow, as Peykan had been a mainstay in the top flight for many years. Tehran’s football scene also took a hit, losing one of its Premier League representatives.

Given these consecutive failures, it raises questions about whether any CEO would be willing to entrust Enayati with a team for the next season. However, it appears that those who supported Enayati’s appointment despite his failure with the Omid team may once again find a new opportunity for him.

Enayati’s situation is emblematic of broader issues within Iranian football, including incompetency, corruption, and nepotism. The rapid progression of former players to coaching roles without adequate training, certification, or experience is a troubling trend. Coaches like Nekounam, Shojaei, and Navidkia are examples of individuals who have been given significant coaching responsibilities without meeting international standards. In contrast, European leagues often require formal coaching certifications and a thorough vetting process before appointments, a practice largely ignored in Iran.

This lack of process and disregard for international coaching standards not only hampers the development of Iranian football but also undermines its credibility on the global stage. For Iranian football to progress, there needs to be a significant overhaul in how coaches are trained, certified, and appointed, ensuring that competence and meritocracy replace the current culture of favoritism and expediency.

Iran’s football Marco Polo

A former Team Melli player has recently joined the fourteenth football league clubs of his career. The 36-year-old Mohammad Ghazi Najafabadi is currently playing in Mes Rafsanjan and experiencing his fourteenth club. However, the record holder for transfer belongs to another Khuzestani player and former Team Melli midfielder Milad Zenidpour

The Khuzestani midfielder has donned the jerseys of eighteen teams, a record in Iran, and not too far from a world record. The former Team Melli player is now 34 years old and plays for Sarawak United in the Malaysian League. The label of “Marco Polo of Iranian football” is quite appropriate for this professional football. Even his ardent fans have trouble keeping track of which team he is playing for!

Zanidpour began his career in Khuzestan then joined  Saipa, Peykan, Rah Ahan, Steel Azin, Damash, Sepahan, Peykan, Malvan Anzali, Zobahan, Naft Masjed Soleyman, Erbil (Iraq), Armi United (Thailand), Gostarish Tabriz, Madura United (Indonesia), Yuki M and finally Sarawak United (Malaysia). He is currently a record holder.

Of course, a much-travelled player in g=his class will hardly ever have time to develop or become a better player. His changing of clubs has not always been smooth either as he was sacked by some like Peykan,

Omid Team list for Oman match is announced.

Zlatko Kranjcar has announced the list of 22 players who will join the U23 team for the friendly match against Oman on 20th November.  The match will be held in the Omani Capital Muscat and is a part of the preparation for the upcoming challenge at continental level and the qualifying for the Olympics.


the squad


Abol Fazl Jalali (Saipa)

Abolfazl Razzaghpour, (Peykan)

Ali Taheran (Tractoration Tabriz)

Allahyar Sayadmanesh (Esteghlal Tehran)

Amir Roustaei, (Peykan)

Aref Aghasi (Foolad Khouzestan)

Hamid Reza Taherkhani (Persepolis)

Hossein Saki (Sanat Naft Abadan)

Mehdi Ghaedi (Esteghlal Tehran)

Meiraj Ismaili (Zob Ahan)

Mohammad Aghajanpour (Padideh Mashhad)

Mohammad Khodabandehlo  (Peykan)

Mohammad Mehdi Mehdikhani (Padideh Mashhad)

Mohammad Reza Azadi (Tractoration Tabriz)

Nader Mohammadi (Peykan)

Omid Darreh (Saipa)

Omid Noorafkan  (Chareloi )

Reza Jebeireh  (Sanat Naft Abadan)

Reza Karimi (Esteghlal Tehran)

Reza Shakari (Rubin Kazan)

Shahab Adeli (Sepahan),

Sina Zamehran (Padideh Mashhad)

Putting Iran’s football name into disrepute

Jlloyd Samuel , a sad saga.

A disturbing interview with Trinidadian footballer Jlloyed Samuel conducted by ISNA news agency highlighted the degree at which Iranian football chiefs and administrators has put Iran’s name into disrepute.

Jlloyed Samuel the ex-Esteghlal player who currently plays for the relegated team Peykan , in Iran Persian Gulf League is virtually a prisoner in Iran and not allowed to leave due to that renowned charge of Income Tax evasion by footballers.

“Not only, Esteghlal has not paid my salaries, and that was the major reason that I left them, they have also ceased paying the income tax on my behalf that was part of their contractual obligation. As such I am not able to leave the country until this matter is sorted out” a despairing Samuel told ISNA.

“I am in frequent contact with Esteghlal management and all I hear repeatedly are promises one after another. Nothing but false promises and false hopes. I reached a stage that I was having difficulty making ends meet. I had no choice but to file an official complaint against Esteghlal with FIFA. The verdict was very clear in my benefit, yet Esteghlal has still not paid me.” Samuel said.

“I have a problem with Peykan as well but hope that at least with this club, matters do not reach FIFA as I hope that an amicable solution is reached. I am a professional player who came to Iran to work and earn money; I have to be paid like any other professional. When a footballer is not paid his due, it is impossible for him to concentrate and give his best while playing. His mind will always be occupied. Performance in football is not just about the physical state of a player but also his mental state. So many problems are piling up on me because of lack of money. I don’t understand why this is happening in Iran. People like me come here to give their best and expect to be rewarded and paid, I enjoyed playing in Esteghlal and loved Iran I loved the fans, but slowly this feeling turned into a nightmare. It cannot be good for Iran’s football reputation at all.”

“It is a joke that I am now being held here against my well. I am not an Iranian citizen and I need to go back to my family and country. I have sought diplomatic counseling and been advised to amicably sort out the issue first, before the diplomats escalate the issue and it becomes embarrassing.”

Carlos Queiroz was the last victim of the tax authority as his employer has neglected to pay his taxes. Queiroz was banned from traveling before some temporary payment helped to lift the travel ban.

 Yet again, Iranian football management has miserably failed, not only professionally but also ethically and honorably. The incompetency and corruption of managers reaches its peak at Esteghlal and Persepolis clubs, both owned , managed and controlled by the government. No wonder that the owner wants to rid itself from these two clubs.

Source: ISNA

Mehrdad Pooladi saved by FIFA !

The enigma of Mehrdad Pooladi and his failure to sign for a club was revealed at last.

Pooladi , who was Iran’s best player in FIFA World Cup 2014 according to figures and performance statistics, has failed to sign for a club since his contract with Persepolis expired at the end of last season.

It seems that whole problem preventing  Al Shahaniya , who had Pooladi in the top of their shopping list , from signing Team Melli’s left back was the refusal by FFIRI to issue an ITC despite Pooladi being a free agent and out of contract.

In an official statement by FFIRI published in their website, the federation announced that it has received a request from Qatar FA on 20th of September 2014 for the issue of International Transfer. Certificate (ITC) for Mehrdad Pooladi upon the request of  QSL club Al Shahaniya Club of Doha. FFIRI refused to issue the ITC because of Military Service commitment by Pooladi !

As per the FIFA regulation governing the transfer of players, if the original country of issuance failed to produce the ITC without providing a valid reason(s), then after 15 days the player may join his desired team without requiring an ITC while the FA that refused to issue the ITC in the first place has no legal right to that player.

In what seems to be another of those weird twists of the wonderful football administration of Iran, the interference of the football federation in a governmental task is immediately put under scrutiny. The question that would be asked by anyone with an average level of intelligence is, what has FFIRI , an NGO as Kaffashian likes to always brag about, has got to do with the Military service requirement of a player , which is purely government official business?

Time and Time again, FIFA has warned, suspended, sanctioned many of its FA members across the world because of government interference in football. Iran was one such country that was suspended right after the 2006 World Cup as the government forced the head of FA at the time , Mohammad Dadkan to leave his office, citing unsatisfactory results in the FIFA World Cup 2006 !!!

Masoud Shojaei along with Mehrdad Pooladi in the signing ceremony

It seems that FFIRI are not heeding the warnings and have yet to fully comprehend the risks of government interference in any shape, a taboo as far as FIFA is concerned. The government of Iran has the power , the tools , the procedures and the legal means to deal with the players who have escaped the military service, the Football Federation has no right to act as an agent of the government and refuse to issue ITC for a player because Pooladi has an issue with military service. To complicate the matters even more, one must ask, where has the FFIRI been all these years since 2006 when Pooladi started with Peykan Esteghlal, Tractorsazi , Mes Kerman , and now Persepolis? The answer was nicely provided by FFIRI themselves when an official responded to media questions and stated that FFIRI is not to be blamed for the latest problems of fake certificates because it does not have the tools nor the legal power to ascertain the validity of a player’s military service status. That is of course quite a valid point and a genuinely true statement, but refusing to issue an ITC for Pooladi is a direct contradiction to this statement and playing with fire as far as FIFA regulations are concerned. When FFIRI does not have the tools, the information and the legal power, why is it refusing to issue an ITC based on a military matter ?

Mehrdad Pooladi officially joined Al Shahaniya of Qatar Star League (QSL) to join his team Melli teammate Masoud Shojaei as the second Iranian in the team.

The team will be playing against Umm Salal who has Pejman Montazeri in their line up on Thursday. Al Shahaniya is currently two places above the relegation zone of the QSL with 4 points from 5 games.