Iran

Iran

Appearances at World Cups

The national team of Iran began to participate in WC qualifying tournaments in 1974. They could reach the final part of the competition in the next cycle. In 1978, they were blown out by the Netherlands (0-3) and Peru (1-4). This is why a draw against Scotland didn't help them to go further than the first group stage. The next appearance of Iran in the tournament was in 1998 and 2006 where they didn't have the time to be remembered for anything.

The last WC was the most successful for the national team of Iran. Despite the final elimination immediately after the group stage, they had quite a good match against Nigeria, almost stole points from Argentina when they had a goal from Messi only in the additional minute. But a defeat in the double-edged game against the Bosnians put paid to their perspectives. In the qualification for this WC, the Iranians were stronger than all their opponents and became one of the first teams to prepare tickets to Russia. Only the host team and the national team of Brazil could book a seat faster than Iran.

year

G

W

D

L

М

total

1978

3

0

1

2

2-8

4 th in group

1998

3

1

0

2

2-4

3 rd in group

2006

3

0

1

2

2-6

4 th in group

2014

3

0

1

2

1-4

4 th in group

Total

12

1

3

8

7-22

-

Head coach and best player

Portuguese specialist Carlos Queiroz is the coach who managed to take the national team of Iran to the WC twice for the first time in history. He has been chairing it since 2011. He wrote a letter of resignation in 2015 but remained in the end. And we will hope he will work to the end of the World Cup. The specialist will already certainly leave the post after the WC because he accepted an offer of another Asian national team – Uzbekistan.

Sardar Azmoun is, undoubtedly, the best player and the main star of the Iranian national team. If he doesn't have so many fans in Kazan, he is literally adored in Iran. The quantity of Azmoun's followers in social networks reaches the level of Cristiano Ronaldo, which, in Rubin coach Kurban Berdyev's opinion, sometimes harms the football player himself. This World Cup is to be decisive for Sardar from a perspective of the development of his career. And the forward is likely to put the greatest effort to prove his excellence over other rising stars.

  • Preliminary squad: Beiranvand – Rezaeian, Pouraliganji, Montazeri, Mohammadi – Karimi, Ezatolahi, Jahanbakhsh, Dejagah, Taremi – Azmoun.

Portuguese specialist Carlos Queiroz is the coach who managed to take the national team of Iran to the WC twice for the first time in history

Base camp and cities

But we can't say that Iran is lucky in its group. Together with Iran, the quartet B has the European champion Portugal, 2010 WC champion Spain and one of the leaders in Africa Morocco. They had no luck with the base camp. Iran tried to agree with Kazan first but couldn't come to an agreement on details. Lokomotiv's Bakovka base in Moscow was chosen, which is a bit doubtful because they won't play at the group stage in the capital. But it will take much time to get to Kazan, Saransk and Saint Petersburg than it could be in fact.

By Zulfat Shafigullin. Photo: fifa.com