Nike won't supply Iranian national soccer team with shoes, citing U.S. sanctions


"U.S. sanctions mean that, as a US company, Nike can not supply shoes to players in the Iranian national team at this time", the Oregon-based company said in a statement obtained by ESPN. Despite the fact that team Iran goes unfancied to the World Cup this year, yet, they have won over fans hearts.

United States-based sport and clothing company Nike announced it will not provide cleats to Iran's national team ahead of the 2018 World Cup, scheduled to begin on June 14, citing USA sanctions.

Nike cited the global economic sanctions against Iran as the primary reason for the withdrawal, a effect of the Trump administration's decision to withdraw from the 2015 worldwide nuclear deal and tighten restrictions against the Asian country.

The late decision has disrupted Iran's preparations, with some players reportedly having to buy their own footwear from Russian shops or even ask club team-mates for help.

Nike has previously supplied the Iranian team with boots, and did so at the 2014 World Cup when similar sanctions were in place.

A statement from Nike said the company was forbidden from supplying kit to the Iranian team as it prepares for its opening World Cup game. Besides, they were the first team to reach Russian Federation on June 5. Those sanctions include penalties for companies that do business with Iran. A warm-up exhibition match with Greece was cancelled at the last minute due to political concerns and basic tasks, such as booking hotels and flights or doing anything that involves transferring money, require workarounds because of the sanctions against Iran.

It remains to be seen whether Queiroz's defiant verdict bears fruit, given any loser of Friday's crunch fixture in Saint Petersburg would be left needing to beat either Spain or Portugal to reach the last 16.