Monday, November 28, 2011

A little too anal-retentive in Iran

It seems an odd ritual to pat the butt of your team-mate after an especially good play, but no one seems to mind the good-natured but vaguely homoerotic aspect except the Islam. The Iranian soccer team, Persepolis is a great team, winning games and making the people of Iran proud. The government, however seems worried that a pat on the bottom will bring about the end of Islam as they know it, thus the suspending of two players and the sacking of the coach. No more glute-squeezing on the field, and watch those hands. There is only one ball you are supposed to come in contact with, so keep it clean boys.

From The Los Angeles Times November 27

Long suspensions, heavy fines for Iran soccer players' fanny pat

REPORTING FROM TEHRAN AND BEIRUT -- Long suspensions and $30,000 fines. That's whatIran's football association imposed on two Iranian soccer players accused of celebrating a goal in an "immoral" manner, Iranian media reported Sunday.

The two players landed in hot water last month when Persepolis defender Mohammed Nosrati swatted the backside of his teammate, Sheys Rezaei, while celebrating a goal in a nationally televised match.

The players insisted the fanny pat was only for fun. But it didn't go down well with the Iranian football federation's disciplinary committee, which immediately suspended both players on charges of immoral offense and reportedly dismissed Persepolis manager Mahmoud Khordbin for failing to report the incident.

Nosrati's suspension will last 10 months, according to the semiofficial Iranian Students News Agency. Rezaei will be suspended for 20 months. (Link in Persian.)

The team's current manager, Mohammed Royanian, protested the decision, telling ISNA that it will have a "bad impact on the spirit of the team."

Still, Persepolis beat Zoob e-Ahan 3-2 in Esfahan on Sunday, according to the semiofficial Iranian Labor News Agency.

Persepolis is Iran’s most popular club team and receives government financing.

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