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Iran coach responds to Jurgen Klinsmann’s ‘culture’ comments

November 27, 2022 at 4:39 pm

Head coach Carlos Queiroz of Iran during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha, Qatar. [Mustafa Yalçın/AA]

The coach of Iran’s national football team, Carlos Queiroz has branded BBC pundit and former German international Jurgen Klinsmann a “disgrace to football” following his comments on the Iranian side’s performance on the pitch against Wales in the FIFA World Cup hosted in Qatar, which they went onto winning 2-0.

Following the match, BBC presenter Gabby Logan brought up the subject of Iran’s “gamesmanship” to which Klinsmann said “Yes, that’s their culture,” adding that it was “Their way of doing it, and that is why Carlos Queiroz fits really well [with] the Iranian national team.”

“This is just part of their culture and how they play, then they work the referee, you saw the bench always jumping up, working the fourth official and the linesman, constantly in their ears, constantly in your face,” the former Tottenham legend said.

The pundit also took aim at Iran’s coach by addressing him informally by his forename: “Carlos fits really well with the national team and their culture, he failed in South America with Colombia and then failed to qualify with Egypt, and he came in right before the World Cup with Iran, where he worked for a long time.”

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However, Queiroz who is from Portugal and is Iran’s longest-serving manager called on Klinsmann to resign from his role at FIFA’S technical study group over the comments on Iranian culture and his disparaging remarks over his professionalism. Queiroz also posted an open letter to the German on Twitter.

“You took the initiative to call me Carlos, so I believe it is proper to call you Jurgen. Right? Even not knowing me personally, you question my character with a typical prejudiced judgment of superiority.”

“No matter how much I can respect what you did inside the pitch, those remarks about Iran Culture, Iran National Team and my players are a disgrace to Football. Nobody can hurt our integrity if it is not at our level, of course.”

Klinsmann has since sought to defuse the situation and has insisted his comments were “taken out of context” and said he would give Queiroz a call to “calm things down”.

Iran will play their final group stage match against the US on Tuesday for a place in the second knockout stages of the World Cup.

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