Mehdi Taj, left, pictured with FIFA President Gianna Infantino, has been elected FFIRI President ©Getty Images

Mehdi Taj has been elected President of the Football Federation Islamic Republic of Iran (FFIRI) for a two-year term after a General Assembly which at one stage had been called off went ahead.

In a three-candidate race, Taj secured 51 votes to defeat Acting President Mirshad Majedi, who earned 25, and Azizollah Mohammadi on four votes.

Taj replaces Shahaboddin Azizi Khadem, who was removed from the FFIRI Presidency in February after just a year in charge, with his reign tarred by legal and economic uncertainties regarding various contracts.

The General Assembly took place yesterday despite the FFIRI announcing it would not go ahead due to non-compliance with the law, just hours beforehand, according to the Tehran Times.

FFIRI Board of Directors spokesperson Ehsan Osuli claimed the postponement was an arbitrary decision made by FFIRI general secretary Hassan Kamranifar, hence the meeting ultimately being held.

"None of the members of the FFIRI Board of Directors were informed of the cancellation or postponement of the General Assembly," said Osuli, as reported by the Tehran Times.

"The decision was made by Kamranifar.

"We immediately organised an extraordinary and urgent meeting at 4am.

"We asked Kamranifar for his decision's proof, reasons, and documents. 

"After the discussions we had in the meeting, the Board of Directors concluded that the General Assembly meeting must be held as planned."

Mehdi Taj previously said he would re-hire Carlos Queiroz as manager if elected as FFIRI President ©Getty Images
Mehdi Taj previously said he would re-hire Carlos Queiroz as manager if elected as FFIRI President ©Getty Images

Taj previously led the organisation from 2016 to 2019, resigning in December of that year due to illness.

During Taj's premiership the FFIRI hired Belgian Marc Wilmots to manage the men's national team, and he was sacked seven months later after losing to Bahrain and Iraq, costing the FFIRI €4 million (£3.44 million/$4 million) in compensation.

On the manager front, Taj previously promised to re-sign Portuguese coach Carlos Queiroz as the national team manager if elected, meaning Croatian Dragan Skočić could face losing his job.

Skočić was re-hired last month just a week after being sacked due to backlash from fans who said it was not the correct time to do so with the FIFA World Cup set to begin in November.

Iran are in the same group as England, Wales and the United States for this year's World Cup in Qatar.