Charlton anger Iran with cancellation of friendly

Two of the matches, against Spanish sides Marbella and Malaga, have been called off for technical reasons.

However Championship outfit Charlton Athletic, who were due to face Iran on July 20, have reportedly withdrawn in the wake of controversial missile tests by the Iranian government last week.

The deputy head of the Iran Football Federation, Mehdi Taj, said: "Our contract (with Charlton) had even been confirmed by the English Football Association. We had gone through all the proper administrative channels and were in the process of negotiating television rights to broadcast the match but Charlton have changed their mind.

"It is regrettable that they (Charlton) have cited the missile test as their reason because FIFA insists that politics do not mix with football.

"The Iranian Football Federation is now trying hard to arrange a friendly against another Spanish club."

Mr. Taj said the IFF would be seeking compensation from Charlton.

"We have sent FIFA a comprehensive letter as well as our contract with Charlton, which has been passed by the English Football Association.

"The IFF will pursue this case and Charlton Athletic FC must compensate us."