Was 2002; at that point the FA and rest of Great Britain had no interest in futsal. More to the point the FA had said to me that futsal could not be played in England. Ridiculous I thought and I picked up phone and made a call to FIFA. Best call I ever made, Victor Bicario, a fluent English speaking Spaniard was in charge of futsal, I was the call he had been waiting for, someone in England that wanted to play futsal. Remember at this point FIFA was playing futsal tournaments throughout the world with the originators of football missing. From that point on all FIFA emails regarding England futsal was copied in to me. One email offered the Iranian national team to play in England two matches for a fee of, from memory £9k, of which FIFA would pay a large portion. I circulated the email to the limited number of teams and contacts I had at that time, outcome was that Tranmere Victoria, a team still playing today, managed to get sponsorship to take up the offer.
They took a hiding both nights they played, but was not disgraced, Iran was at a level, that until I watched that night, I did not know existed. FIFA made sure the FA was invited and from that point futsal slowly has got to the point it is at today.
Iran’s national futsal team has been ranked seventh in the newest global ranking of the indoor sport.
In the latest ranking issued by a major futsal monitoring website, Iran has been ranked seventh with 1,588 points. The new ranking shows a four-point jump for the Iranian national futsal team compared to the previous ranking, the IRIB News reported.
Iran holds the first position in Asia ahead of Japan with 1,399 points and Thailand which has gained 1,295 points.
Spain tops the world ranking with 1,915 points followed by Brazil and Italy with 1,910 and 1,747 points, respectively.
Iranians have played in five editions of FIFA Futsal World Championship, reaching the semi-finals in their first appearance in 1992.
Known as the “Kings of Asian Futsal,” Iranian futsal players have won ten editions of Asian Futsal Championship.