ISP Exclusive Interview with Alexander Nouri

Alex is an offensive midfield player, and was born in 1979. He has played for teams such as Werder Bremen U-19, Werder Bremen II, Satlle Sounders in America, KFC Uerdingen, and Osnabrück (in Bundesliga 2).

IranSportsPress.com: Hi Alex. Thank you for giving us some of your time. Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Alexander Nouri: I was born in Buxtehude, a small city near Hamburg. My father himself played football and it was he who encouraged me to play the game.

IranSportsPress.com: You are half Iranian. But as you were born in Germany did you have much connection with the Iranian culture as a child?
Alexander Nouri: My dad is Iranian. He was born in Rasht, and was raised in Tehran. My mother is German. So I was lucky in a way that I grew up under the influence of two different cultures. I love Iran. I love my Iranian side and I see myself as much Iranian as I am German. Sadly, I don’t speak much Persian. My dad studied in another city when I was a child (Oldenburg), and he only visited us during the weekends. When he did come to visit us, he wanted us to speak and learn German, so that we don’t have any problems at school. He didn’t want us to be treated as foreigners. He himself had bad experiences at that time, and he obviously wanted us to avoid such problems. However, my goal is to learn to speak Persian to the best of my ability. I feel close to the Iranian culture and we have a lot of family from Iran who visit us, and I would like to be speaking in Persian with them. I like Iranian food, and I like Iranian music. I have a son, and I have named him “Arian”, which as you know is an Iranian name.

IranSportsPress.com: Have you ever visited Iran?
Alexander Nouri: I have been to Iran twice.The first time I visited Iran I was only 5 years old. The second time I visited Iran was two years ago. I travelled with my dad, and we visited many places such as Takht Jamshid, Isfahan, Shiraz, Tehran, etc. I had an amazing time and really enjoyed myself, and fell in love with Iran.

IranSportsPress.com: What was the reason you left Werder Bremen II?
Alexander Nouri: I didn’t think I had any chances of playing with the first team in the near future, so I decided to make a career move and follow my football with a different team.

IranSportsPress.com: Why didn’t you receive any offers from Bundesliga teams after a good showing in Bundesliga 2?
Alexander Nouri: I had a difficult time in my last year with Osnabrück. I was a regular player and played my part in promotion to Bundesliga 2, but despite all this, I didn’t feel happy with everything that was happening around me, and I knew that I will depart the team soon and go somewhere else which offered me an my family a better alternative. After some difficult time, my current team Holstein Kiel (which currently top Bundesliga 3, with a good chance of getting promoted to Bundesliga 2) offered me a contract with good conditions. The terms of the contract was more or less what I was after. The team is financially very secure and they were happy to support me with my studies as well. Maybe I could have gone to another team, but my studies are very important to me. I will be 30 next year, and I have to think what to do with the rest of my life after I finish my football career. I have a family that I need to support, so I think I need to make sure I put a lot of emphasis on my studies as well as playing football.

IranSportsPress.com: But how did you end up in Bundesliga 3? After your League Pocal (DFB Pokal) match against Bayern Munich, many believed that you can have even played in Bundesliga 1.
Alexander Nouri: I had many injuries in my career, and some of them came at the worst possible time. It is true that hard training and determination is very important in football, but you also need some luck. I am not really upset about those injuries, and I am not the type of person who complains. I had the luck to play in Bundesliga 2, and I have made a lot of friends there. I am now playing for a team which has a great chance of getting promoted to Bundesliga 2, so I am looking forward to what future brings.

IranSportsPress.com: Do you know any of the Iranian players who play in Germany?
Alexander Nouri: I know Ashkan (Dejagah), and Ferydoon (Zandi). We have played against each other in the past, and we have talked to each other during the games. I am friends with Amir Shapourzadeh. He is also from Hamburg, and we try and meet whenever it is possible.

IranSportsPress.com: Did you ever think about playing for Iran national team? Or were you ever approached by Team Melli officials?
Alexander Nouri: I was in contact with the Iranian Football Federation in 2004/05 through Reza Fazeli. Sadly I was injured at the time and when I was invited to join the team during the training camp in England, I could not take up the invitation due to my injury. It would have been an honour for me to wear the Team Melli shirt.

IranSportsPress.com: Do you follow Iran national team? And what do you think of Ali Daei?
Alexander Nouri: Of course I follow the matches. Of course I am in no position to judge Ali Daei, but I would like to wish Team Melli and Ali Daei the very best of luck and hope they manage to qualify to World Cup 2010 in South Africa.

IranSportsPress.com: How is your current team doing at the moment, and are you free of your previous injuries?
Alexander Nouri: Right now I am very happy here. We are top of the table, and I am in good shape. This club has a very good management team, and we have the potential to become very big in the future. I am very happy to be part of this team.

IranSportsPress.com: You mentioned that you named your son “Arian”. Would you like him to become a footballer in the future?
Alexander Nouri: I am not going to force him in to football. He has to decide what he likes to do with his life, although I will always be there to support him and give him advice. It is very difficult to become a professional footballer. But as I said, if he is talented and if he decides to become a professional footballer, I will fully support him.

IranSportsPress.com: Just as the last question, please tell us a bit about your dad.
Alexander Nouri: My dad used to play football in Iran. I think my grandfather was a very good footballer and might have played at the highest level. My dad was born in Rasht, and was raised in Tehran where he received his Diploma. He studied Chemistry in Germany. He was my coach when I was younger, and when I went to Werder Bremen at the age of 15, he was signed up as an assistant coach. He always believed in me and he is my role model in life.

IranSportsPress.com: Thank you for giving us your time, and we wish you and your son “Arian”, and the rest of your family all the best.

IranSportsPress.com would like to thank Paiam G for conducting this interview. If you have any further questions to ask from Alexander Nouri, please contact us on news@iransportspress.com