AFC - The Islamic Republic of Iran will face Iraq in the final of the AFC U-20 Futsal Championship final on Friday.
With their qualification to the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires secured, it will be the battle for top prize and to achieve a perfect unbeaten record in the tournament. Group D table-toppers Iran have only conceded nine goals, compared to Iraq’s 11.
Iran’s most thrilling game was undoubtedly the semi-final match against the host nation on Wednesday. In a scintillating end to end game both teams were incessant in their bid to overcome their opposition. The encounter went to extra time during which Ali Arani’s side eventually clinched with a two-goal cushion.
Iraq’s match against Thailand on Matchday Six proved to be most decisive. It was a match to determine the Group A winner. Ali Talib’s side went into the half-time break with a 3-1 lead, only for the host nation to return more aggressively with a two goal reply, but the Iraqis held their ground to record a famous 7-3 victory and claim top spot in a six-team Group A.
6 successive wins
Leading goalscorer: Hamzah Kadkhoda with 7
Iran Head Coach Ali Arani
“I’m sure the match with Iraq will require high concentration from both sides. Of course it will have its own conditions and situations, but it will most probably be a really tough game.
“The U-20 team here want to be a part of the senior national team one day, and winning this tournament will help their chances. Also as a human being, we will keep wanting to achieve and be the best.”
7 successive wins
Leading goalscorer: Abbas Ali with 5
Iraq Head Coach Ali Talib
“We will need new strategies and a new plan against Iran tomorrow. It will definitely be the toughest match we will have faced, but it won't be difficult for us.
“We will take the trophy home and win in Argentina [2018 Summer Youth Olympics].”
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