Saudis vow to boycott football in Iran, citing security fears

Tensions between Tehran and Riyadh are extending to the football pitch, with the Saudi football association saying it would not participate in international matches in Iran out of security concerns, citing the recent storming of its embassy.

Iran blasted the football decision, which follows the Saudi cutting off of diplomatic relations Sunday with Iran, after the weekend storming of the Saudi embassy by a mob in Tehran.

"FIFA and the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) have clear rules that politics has no place in football," Iranian football official Asghar Bagherian told ISNA on Thursday.

The first impact would be on Asian Champions League games involving Saudi and Iranian teams in January and February.

The Saudi decision is illogical and illegitimate, Bagherian said, rejecting a Saudi offer to hold the matches in other Gulf states.

Last update: Fri, 08/01/2016 - 02:00

More from World

Sri Lanka drops proposal to decriminalize homosexuality

Sri Lanka has dropped a proposal to decriminalize homosexuality following protests, a senior cabinet minister said...

Suicide car bombing kills 35 at Malian military camp

A suicide car bombing killed an estimated 35 people at a military camp in the northern Malian city of Gao on...

Reports: Former president George HW Bush in hospital in Houston

Former US president George HW Bush has been admitted to hospital in Houston, Texas, news reports said Wednesday.

Sources: Syria regime and opposition pick teams for Astana talks

The Syrian government and opposition have picked their delegations for Russian- and Turkish-sponsored peace talks ...

Low polls, protests plague Trump ahead of divisive inauguration

When Donald Trump places his hand on a Bible once used by Abraham Lincoln to take the presidential oath of office on...