It is obvious that an unprecedented phenomenon took place in Armenian football. The Banants-Lori Semi-Final match was abandoned. The owner of "Banants" Jivan Cheloyants announced about the boycott of the game and that the game will not take place. The FFA did not hesitate to issue a statement “FFA strongly condemned Jivan Cheloyan's behavior and said that any club or individual has no right to interfere with the FFA-controlled competition, adding that the selection of referees and evaluation of their actions, is the jurisdiction of FFA. It was also mentioned in the statement that the FFA Disciplinary Committee would impose sanctions”.  

Let's try to understand the reason for the demarche of the "Banants". After the Banants-Pyunik match, the 24th round of the Armenian Premier League, Banants filed a complaint with FFA on referee performance by Gevorg Yeghoyan. In response, FFA Chief Referee Officer Karen Nalbandian said Yeghoyan did not make mistakes in general. However, "Banants" claims that the referee did not put at least two obvious penalty’s, and let’s not forget to mention that the game ended with a 1-1 draw, followed by a whole chain of anger and curses. And the FFA, ignoring the dissatisfaction with the referee, selects him again to referee very important match with Banants. We can assume that this was a provocation against "Banants". Here is a deliberate intentional intent against "Banants" which creates another scandal around Armenian football. The logic of the analysis leads to a point that the FFA leadership generally has a government-owned approach rather than a partner-friendly relationship with clubs that can lead to disappointment with the club owners over the Armenian football and put in risk for future investments there. However, one thing should be the subject of this discussion as well, that it is unacceptable to refuse to play in the football field, as football is played in any situation, in any weather and they do it for fans, and the corresponding issues should be resolved with the federation and the relevant authorities up to taking the issue to UEFA and or FIFA.

We can assume this provocation is done to eliminate Banants from the Euro Cup competitions. Now, five clubs are fighting for the spots to qualify to European Cup Competitions and it seems someone wanted to get rid of Banants. There are also real fears that Ruben Hayrapetyan still has an influence on the outcome of Armenia's championship matches with his refereeing staff, as well there are a lot of talks that almost nothing changed in federation all his key staff, either stayed or been replaced by his own people. Even people who came to federation through revolution and by far had nothing to do with football before it also came through his help. It is also not a secret that Hayrapetyan and Banants owner Jivan Cheloyanis are tense, and Hayrapetyan is often attending meetings of Ararat Armenia, which belongs to his close friend Samvel Karapetyan. Hayrapetyan was watching the match of the 27th round of "Ararat-Armenia" - "Banants" in the VIP stand of Avan academy (instead of sitting in jail or at least being under criminal investigation, for many violent crimes committed or ordered to be commented by him. It seems we will never get the fair justice that we expected from this revolution) and for many, it was also noticeable that he was approached by referee corpus head Karen Nalbandyan which raises a lot of questions. It appears that the referees directed by Hayrapetyan and Nalbandyan act against clubs against whom the former head of the FFA may have a personal dislike, like in the situation when Henrik Nalbandian, the son of Karen Nalbandyan was the referee of “Ararat Armenia” vs “Banants”. We think this is talking about a lot. There is also a ridiculous fact that the match of the 29th round of "Ararat" - "Ararat-Armenia" was served by the same Eghoyan who clearly ignored the fact that two goals scored by "Ararat-Armenia" were from clear offsides. This situation does not do any good to “Ararat-Armenia” whose owner spent a lot of money to create a very ambitious team, but who might not have any idea how old rats of FFA who think that football in Armenia belongs to them not to people can be very ugly friends for their reputation.

In the end, a question arises: why the current FFA president with his new and old staff does not do anything to change the situation. Why all the talks remain as talks. It’s the time for current FFA president and leaders to prove that there are honest people to clear the image of long-struggling FFA under former president criminal rule. It’s the time to finally create a professional league, well if current FFA staff is honest and really wants and cares for the progress of our football otherwise we might end up in a situation where bad is replaced by worse.


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