FC Persia got suspended from the Finnish indoor football league for walking out in protest during the middle of a match on Sunday when it was playing against a team from Pori. FC Persia captain Omar Razaki was quoted as saying on Turun Sanomat that the players had had enough of poor and partial refereeing.
“It was the same story last year,” he continued.” We complained to the Finnish Football Federation but nothing happened.”
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Christian Thibault, executive director of Liikkukaa! – Sports for All, told Migrant Tales that it’s unfortunate what happened in Turku and that matters had to come to this.
“Why didn’t the Finnish Football Federation react to FC Persia’s complaint?” he said. “At least there would have been a dialogue and differences could have been resolved.”
Even if the size of the migrant community has grown rapidly in Finland, the number of migrant football teams in Helsinki has fallen from 25 to 5 in the past 5 years, according to Thiabault.
Adrián Soto is a Chilean who used to play for Venceremos, one of Finland’s first migrant football teams, during 1979-87, isn’t surprised about FC Persia’s complaints about poor and partial refereeing.
“I remember that the referees were partial when I played for Venceremos and we usually got more red cards easier than players of the Finnish team,” he said. “We knew this problem but never walked out of a game in protest like FC Persia.”
Veneremos has changed its name in 1992 to Colo Colo.
Thiabualt said that his association is ready to help in these types of situations.
“Liikkukaa! – Sports For All has developed methods and has good experience in using them in cases like the one in Turku with FC Persia,” he said. “We are always happy to help out if needed.”