On Thursday, 20th of December the Iranian Football Federation announced
that, according to article 101 of the Professional League regulations,
any football coach not in possession of a coaching certificate may not
accompany their team for the League matches.
According to the ruling all head coaches must obtain an 'A' certificate from the Iranian Football Federation or its equivalent from AFC or FIFA. Any assistant coaches must also possess a minimum 'B' certificate. The second assistant must have a minimum 'C' certificate.
As this is the first year of the Professional League, the Football Federation has tried to gradually put the regulation into effect, though it is necessary for the coaches not having the requirements to take part in coach training classes and obtain the certificates in the shortest possible time. The Federation has also apparently warned the clubs and coaches that if they do not pay attention to the ruling, permission to appear on the pitch will not be issued to them.
The announcement also states that according to the studies carried out, among the League coaches only Ali Parvin, Bahram Atef and Mahmood Yavari plus the two foreign coaches of Foolad Khoozestan and Foolad Mobarakeh possess the 'A' qualification. It also seems that if the League Organization bars coaches such as Hejazi, Mayelikohan, Pourhaidari and others from matches, a new crisis is bound to occur in Iranian football.
Naser Hejazi, one of the coaches who may possibly be banned from being with his team during matches, has many times spoken his mind on the matter in formal gatherings. He believes that it is a waste of time to attend coach training classes. He did not even take part in the recent Joseph Vengolash classes (the expert FIFA coach trainer) in Tehran.
Hejazi commented on this matter, "There is no problem and I don't need any certificates as 'Organizer' of the team. Does the Head of our Football Federation possess a specialized certificate? He must go ahead and follow up the political side of his Organization."
Mehdi Dadras, the Peykan club chairman said, "Mr. Alidoosti, our coach, should have no problems with the certificates he has from Germany. They should correspond to the 'A' certificate of the federation."
Another of the coaches who would not be allowed to accompany his team is Asghar Sharafi of Bargh Shiraz. He commented sarcastically, "I am so delighted that this is happening. This reorganization has to start from somewhere. If it does happen I'll just say goodbye to the whole thing and leave."
It has also been said that Ali Parvin has been named as one of the coaches who is legible. But he has never taken part in coach training classes. The certificate he possesses was given to him by General Nooamooz, the Head of the Football Federation of the time, for Iran's victory of 1990 in Peking and his part in it. The question comes to mind that if such was the case, why didn't Mansour Pourhaidari receive the same in 1998 when Iran once again became the champions in the Asian Olympic Cup in Bangkok?
It is still not clear how strongly the regulation will be enforced, but it is clear that if the regulation is put into full effect, there will be a whole set of new crises in Iranian football. The calamity will affect the coaches and clubs on one side and the Football Federation and the League organization on the other. Who will be the flag bearer of this crusade?