Tuesday, 11 September 2012 20:49
PFDC - BEIRUT, Lebanon celebrated a historical 1-0 victory in the World Cup qualifier against a shamefully performing Iranian national team in Beirut on Tuesday evening.Without the missing Andranik Teymourian, Khosro Heydari, Reza Ghoochannejad, Ashkan Dejagah and Mehrdad Pouladi, the first half turned into a complete desaster for Carlos Queiroz' men, who travelled to Beirut to earn three "easy" points against underdog Lebanon.
Esteghlal midfielder Javad Nekounam could have scored the lead for the Iranians in the first half. His shot in the 13th minute was denied by the superb Libanese goalkeeper Abbas Hassan.
In the 26th minute, the former Hamburger SV striker Roda Antar shaked off Iran's right winger Hossein Mahini after a nice freekick by Mohammad Haidar. Antar's perfect header could not be saved by Iran's goalkeeper Mehdi Rahmati as Mahini was busy to pull Antar's jersey instead of getting the ball.
Shortly before the half-time break, Nekounam's header in the 46th minute narrowly missed the open goal.
After the half-time whistle, the Iranians put more pressure on the Lebanese, but were not able profit from their tactical superiority.
Persepolis midfielder Ali Karimi (54') and Mohammad Ghazi (58', 82', 90+4'), who was subbed in for a disastrously playing Karim Ansarifard, failed to (at least) score the equalizer from close range.
Queiroz' tactical efforts through substitutions of Ehsan Hajsafi and Ghazi at the beginning of the second half as well as striker Gholami in the 68th minute had no impact on today's qualifier.
The Lebanese national players, who were technically and tactically limited, showed a much better performance than the Iranians, who acted like a schoolteam without passion and love for the game.
While South Korea were held by Uzbekistan with a 2-2 draw in Tashkent, Carlos Queiroz will not sit on a solid chair anymore as the next task for the Iranians will be a much harder one than today in Beirut. Iran will face South Korea in Tehran in October.
LEBANON - IR IRAN 1-0 (1-0)
FIFA World Cup qualifier, Beirut, Sport Complex
IRAN: Rahmati - Mahini, Aghily, Montazeri, P. Nouri (46' Hajsafi) - Karimi, Nekounam, M. Nouri - Shojaei, Khalatbari (68' Gholami) - Ansarifard (46' Ghazi)
Goals: 1-0 (26' Roda Antar / assist by M. Haidar)
bookings: P. Nouri, M. Nouri