Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Omar Jarun switches allegiances, challenges FIFA ruling


There have been murmurings about the Jordanian FA going after the Sharbini Brothers and Omar Jarun. These rumors were confirmed when we interviewed Majid Balawi last month. It seemed that in the case of Omar Jarun, however, they would be stopped since he had played an official match with the National Team (Palestine's miserable 2007 World Cup Qualifying loss to Singapore). In fact, he probably is the most widely recognized Palestinian player due to the Al-Jazeera English piece that featured an interview with him.

FIFA should be able to catch on to this and prevent Omar Jarun from playing for Jordan. There was speculation that he would be allowed to play because Palestine did not show up for the return leg of that match. I fail to see how that would be the case since the scoreline from the first leg stood, had both matches been scratched then the scoreline would have read (0-6) not (0-7). The question is how quickly FIFA will spot this infraction and what sort of punishment they would levy against the Jordanian FA. Qatar found itself in a similar situation when it played previously Brazil-tied Emerson against Iraq in 2008. Despite the efforts of Iraq to overturn the result of the match, FIFA claimed that they had lodged their complaint after the deadline had passed and failed to pay a $2,900 appeal fee.

I don't expect our FA to do anything that would require such arduous legwork but other FAs might. They might be able to get away with fielding him during the WAFF Championships since they are little more than a series of glorified friendlies but come the 2011 Asian Cup they may not be so lucky.

As for the player himself, all I can say is that I feel sorry for Jarun. This is a player who really wanted to play international football and should have featured a lot more prominently for the team in the past three years. He isn't the best player in the world but he is surely better than a lot of the players that have lined up next to Bahdari. I've read that Jarun had been in contact with Bezaz but that Bezaz has chosen not to call him up, this is seems to be a move born out of frustration with our FA and our manager. Whether or not he will be allowed to switch allegiances remains to be seen.