You are in FIFA World Cup  / Article

Preview - Group B: IR Iran primed for the best


Wednesday, June 13, 2018
IR Iran-Training-AFP

Moscow: Islamic Republic of Iran were sublime in qualifying and that is the form they will want to carry into Group B of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.


The luck of the draw saw Team Melli grouped with 2010 FIFA World Cup winners Spain, reigning European champions Portugal and Morocco and all, on paper, look to be very tough opposition.



IR Iran, however, are famous for their resilience and with astute tactician Carlos Queiroz guiding them, the three-time Asian champions can meet their target of advancing to the Knockout Stage for the first time.

See also :


IR IRAN



Honours: Asian Cup winners in 1968, 1972, 1976



FIFA World Cup history: Fifth participation



FIFA World Cup best: First round in 1978, 1998, 2006, 2014



FIFA ranking: 37



Nickname: Team Melli



How they qualified: Top of Asian qualifying Group A, unbeaten in 10 games



 

All you need to know: IR Iran

Squad



Goalkeepers: Alireza Beiranvand (Persepolis), Rashid Mazaheri (Zob Ahan), Amir Abedzadeh (Maritimo/POR)



Defenders: Ali Gholizadeh (Saipa), Majid Hosseini (Esteghlal), Milad Mohammadi (Akhmat Grozny/RUS), Mohammad Khanzadeh (Padideh), Morteza Pouraliganji (Alsaad/QAT), Pejman Montazeri (Esteghlal), Ramin Rezaeian (Ostende/BEL), Roozbeh Cheshmi (Esteghlal)



Midfielders: Ehsan Haji Safi (Olympiacos/GRE), Karim Ansarifard (Olympiacos/GRE), Masoud Shojaei (AEK Athens/GRE), Mahdi Torabi (Saipa), Omid Ebrahimi (Esteghlal), Saeid Ezatolahi (Amkar Perm/RUS)



Forwards: Alireza Jahanbakhsh (AZ Alkmaar/NED), Ashkan Dejageh (Nottingham Forest/ENG), Mahdi Taremi (Al-Gharafa/QAT), Reza Ghoochannejhad (Heerenveen/NED), Saman Ghoddos (Ostersunds/SWE), Sardar Azmoun (Rubin Kazan/RUS), Vahid Amiri (Persepolis)



Head Coach: Carlos Queiroz (POR)



 

IR Iran head coach Carlos Queiroz




PORTUGAL

Honours: European Championship winners 2016



FIFA World Cup history: Seventh participation



FIFA World Cup best: Third (1966)



FIFA ranking: 4



Nickname: A Selecao das Quinas



How they qualified: Beat Switzerland to top spot on goal difference in UEFA qualifying Group B after winning nine of their 10 games.

Squad



Goalkeepers: Anthony Lopes (Lyon/FRA), Beto (Goztepe/TUR), Rui Patricio (Sporting Lisbon)



Defenders: Bruno Alves (Glasgow Rangers/SCO), Cedric Soares (Southampton/ENG), José Fonte (Dalian Yifang/CHN), Mario Rui (Napoli/ITA), Pepe (Besiktas/TUR), Raphael Guerreiro (Borussia Dortmund/GER), Ricardo Pereira (FC Porto), Ruben Dias (Benfica)



Midfielders: Adrien Silva (Leicester City/ENG), Bruno Fernandes (Sporting Lisbon), Joao Mario (West Ham/ENG), Joao Moutinho (Monaco/FRA), Manuel Fernandes (Lokomotiv Moscow/RUS), William Carvalho (Sporting Lisbon), Bernardo Silva (Manchester City/ENG)



Forwards: Andre Silva (AC Milan/ITA), Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid/ESP), Gelson Martins (Sporting Lisbon), Goncalo Guedes (Valencia/ESP - on loan from Paris Saint-Germain/FRA), Ricardo Quaresma (Besiktas/TUR)



Head Coach: Fernando Santos (POR)




SPAIN

Honours: World Cup winners in 2010, European Championship winners in 1964, 2008, 2012; Olympic gold medallists in 1992



FIFA World Cup history: 15th participation



FIFA World Cup best: Winners in 2010



FIFA ranking: 10



Nickname: La Roja



How they qualified: Finished top of European qualifying Group G, ahead of Italy, without losing a match

Squad



Goalkeepers: David de Gea (Manchester United/ENG), Pepe Reina (Napoli/ITA), Kepa Arrizabalaga (Athletic Bilbao)



Defenders: Dani Carvajal (Real Madrid), Alvaro Odriozola (Real Sociedad), Gerard Pique (Barcelona), Sergio Ramos (Real Madrid), Nacho (Real Madrid), Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea/ENG), Jordi Alba (Barcelona), Nacho Monreal (Arsenal/ENG)



Midfielders: Sergio Busquets (Barcelona), Saul Niguez (Atletico Madrid), Koke (Atletico Madrid), Thiago Alcantara (Barcelona), Andres Iniesta (Barcelona), David Silva (Manchester City/ENG)



Forwards: Isco (Real Madrid), Marco Asensio (Real Madrid), Lucas Vazquez (Real Madrid), Iago Aspas (Celta Vigo), Rodrigo (Valencia), Diego Costa (Atletico Madrid)



Head Coach: Julen Lopetegui (SPA)




MOROCCO

Honours: Africa Cup of Nations winners 1976



FIFA World Cup history: Fifth participation



FIFA World Cup best: Round of 16 in 1986



FIFA ranking: 41



Nickname: Atlas Lions



How they qualified: Finished top of Group C in African qualifying

Squad



Goalkeepers: Mounir El Kajoui (Numancia/ESP), Yassine Bounou (Girona/ESP), Ahmad Reda Tagnaouti (Ittihad Tanger)



Defenders: Mehdi Benatia (Juventus/ITA), Romain Saiss (Wolverhampton/ENG), Manuel Da Costa (Basaksehir/TUR), Nabil Dirar (Fenerbahce/TUR), Achraf Hakimi (Real Madrid/ESP), Hamza Mendyl (Lille/FRA)



Midfielders: M'barek Boussoufa (Al Jazira/UAE), Karim El Ahmadi (Feyenoord/NED), Youssef Ait Bennasser (Caen/FRA), Sofyan Amrabat (Feyenoord/NED), Younes Belhanda (Galatasaray/TUR), Faycal Fajr (Getafe/ESP), Amine Harit (Schalke 04/GER)



Forwards: Khalid Boutaib (Malatyaspor/TUR), Aziz Bouhaddouz (Saint Pauli/GER), Ayoub El Kaabi (Renaissance Berkane), Nordin Amrabat (Leganes/ESP), Mehdi Carcela (Standard Liege/BEL), Hakim Ziyech (Ajax/NED), Youssef En-Nesyri (Malaga/ESP)



Head Coach: Herve Renard (FRA)




Fixtures (Local Time)



June 15



Morocco vs IR Iran (18:00)



Portugal vs Spain (21:00)



 



June 20



Portugal vs Morocco (15:00)



IR Iran vs Spain (21:00)



 



June 25



Spain vs Morocco (20:00)



IR Iran vs Portugal (21:00)

Recommended Stories :