Photo: Reuters
Protest against Argentina playing soccer in Jerusalem
Photo: Reuters

Report: Argentina cancels Jerusalem soccer match amid anti-Israel complaints

Argentine reports claim Argentinian FA decided to cancel the game scheduled with Israel Saturday at the Teddy Kollek Stadium due to criticism and threats sent to family members of the players.

A friendly World Cup warm-up soccer match scheduled to take place between Israel and Argentina on Saturday in Jerusalem has been canceled due to what appears to be pressure by anti-Israel activists, according to Argentine media outlets.



The match is supposed to kick off at 9:35pm at the Teddy Kollek Stadium, but reports said that in the last few hours, a decision was taken to pull out and an official statements confirming the change is expected shortly.


One newspaper reported that the decision was final and that those involved with the promotion of the game had been notified and were scrambling to convince the organizers to change their minds.


 (Photo: AFP)
(Photo: AFP)


In recent days building up to the match, a number of demonstrations have been held against the game in both Argentina and Spain.


Palestinian FA chief Jibril Rajoub has been at the forefront of trying to have the game called off, claiming that it is being played on “occupied land” and calling on soccer fan


He also wrote to Claudio Tapia, the head of the Argentinian FA, last week accusing Israel of using the match as a "political tool."


"The Israeli government has turned a regular sports match into a political tool. As was widely covered in Argentinian media, the match now is being played in order to celebrate the '70th anniversary of the State of Israel'," part of Rajoub's letter said.


 (Photo: Reuters)
(Photo: Reuters)

On Sunday, Rajoub declared a campaign against Argentina and particularly soccer star and striker Lionel Messi, noting he has millions of fans across the Arab and Islamic world, Asia and Africa.


"He's a big symbol so we are going to target him personally and we call on all to burn his picture and his shirt and to abandon him. We still hope that Messi will not come," he told reporters after leaving the Argentinian representative office in Ramallah.


According to another news outlet, the Argentinian FA convened to discuss the matter which raised concern over the influx of protests against the match and the threats received by family members of the players.


פרסום ראשון: 06.05.18, 23:42
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