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EghtesadOnline: Branko Ivankovic, the 40th manager of Iran’s Persepolis Football Club, and Carlos Queiroz, Iran’s national football team's head coach of seven years, have created more money for the teams they lead than the value of their contracts, a report by said.

“Where you actually finish in the league depends on the money you’ve spent,” Sam Allardyce, an English football manager and former professional player once famously said. “It’s a statistical fact.”  

Given the depreciation of the Iranian rial, signing foreign football coaches may not be worth it anymore, but statistics concerning two famous foreign coaches in Iran, Branko—as he is known by his first name here—and Queiroz, say otherwise.

Persepolis’ qualification for the Asian Champions League final this year has brought substantial revenues for the club. A total of $2 million were awarded to the team after it advanced to the final round. If they beat Japan’s Kashima Antlers in ACL Final stage on Nov. 10 and win the title, the sum will increase to $4 million. This is while the team has already received $710,000 in previous stages, Financial Tribune reported.

Last year, Branko’s team made around $500,000 in the Asian Champions League when they reached the semifinal stage. In all, Persepolis will make a total of $5.2 million out of ACL provided they win their first Asian championship and $3.2 million if they finish as runners-up. 

This income does not include team’s sponsorship deals or the revenues gained from selling tickets for matches in previous stages, such as the one held at Tehran’s Azadi Stadium with Qatar’s Al-Sadd SC last month. 

Branko’s newest contract is worth around $750,000, suggesting that the club’s awards from ACL over the past two leagues outweigh the Croatian manager’s salary over the past four years he’s been the manager of the Iranian Reds. 

The World Cup is the most lucrative and costliest football event. FIFA, football’s organizational leader in the world, rakes in billions of dollars in revenue every four years from the World Cup, while nations that host the tournament foot a bill of $10 billion or more. 

The 2018 tournament was held in 11 Russian cities, beginning with 32 teams in a knockout tournament format. Iran made its fifth appearance at the FIFA World Cup earlier this year, which was also their second consecutive presence in the tourney. 

The prize for reaching 2018 World Cup tournament was $8 million. The Football Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran has, in fact, pocketed as much as $16 million, thanks to qualifying for the tournament two times in a row with Queiroz at its helm. 

In his first three years as a head coach, the Portuguese football manager received a total of $4.5 million; his compensation over the following four years was reportedly around $2.2 million. Altogether, the revenues he generated for Team Melli were significantly higher than his estimated salary.  

Queiroz has also been the manager of the Portugal national team and Spanish club Real Madrid, and was Alex Ferguson’s assistant manager at the English club Manchester United. He has qualified three national teams to the World Cup, namely South Africa in 2002, Portugal in 2010 and Iran in 2014 and 2018.


Iran's 1st Sports Economy Conference in December

The Financial Tribune’s parent company, Donya-e-Eqtesad Media Group is scheduled to organize the First Sports Economy Conference in Iran on Dec. 2-3. 

The upcoming conference will focus on several topics, including opportunities and challenges of sports industry, investment and financing of sports, economic approach to sports management, marketing in sports, sports economics and technology, as well as health and medicine in sports.

It will have economists and university-based economic scholars as well as top officials of the Ministry of Sports and Youth, sports management professionals and big business owners and economic enterprises on its scientific committee.

As Alireza Bakhtiari, the CEO of Donya-e-Eqtesad media group, pointed out in a preliminary session ahead of the event that the business of sports and all things tangentially related to it accounted for 1% of the global GDP in 2014, i.e. around $700 billion. 

“This is while the perception of sports as an industry has never gained strong support from Iranian governments. The idea of organizing the First Sports Economy Conference was to facilitate the recognition of sports as an industry,” he said.


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