7 Jun 2011

Iranian women lose match over uniform

6:59 am on 7 June 2011

Football's world governing body FIFA says Iran were warned about dress code rules which led to their women's team being banned from an Olympic qualifying match last week.

Iran had said it would complain to FIFA after the women's team were stopped from playing a second-round qualifier for next year's London Olympics because of their full-body strip, which includes a head scarf and conforms to the Islamic dress code.

Opponents Jordan were awarded a 3-nil win and Iranian officials said the decision could cost them a place in the 2012 Games.

FIFA says both teams had been reminded before Saturday's match about its rules and that, as a result, Jordan had decided not to select several players.

FIFA says its decision in March 2010 which permitted players to wear a cap that covers their head to the hairline, but does not extend below the ears to cover the neck, was still applicable for the Iran/Jordan match.

Despite initial assurances that the Iranian delegation understood this, the players came out wearing the hijab, and the head and neck totally covered, which was an infringement of the Laws of the Game.

The match commissioner and match referee therefore decided to apply correctly the Laws of the Game, which ended in the match being abandoned.