Two foreigners on Israel’s national soccer team were excluded from an international tournament.
The international soccer authority FIFA announced over the weekend that players representing countries whose citizenship they do not hold will be excluded from the Euro 2008 tournament. That excluded Roberto Colautti of Argentina and Toto Tamuz of Nigeria, who only have Israeli residency status.
In response, the Israel Football Association appealed to the Interior Ministry to naturalize the two players, who are not Jewish. Colautti is an Israeli resident by virtue of being married to an Israeli. Tamuz has Israeli residency status because he grew up in Israel after his father came to Israel to play soccer.