Iran stuns Wales to grab emotional late win amid incredible drama
Iran scored in the 98th and 100th minute to beat 10-man Wales 2-0 to secure an emotional and hugely important victory.
On and off the pitch.
After a tight, tense game, Iran were the better team in the second half and had some huge chances as Sardar Azmoun hit the post twice. Wales were reduced to 10 men late on as Wayne Hennessey rushed off his line and took out Mehdi Taremi.
Then in the 98th and 101st minutes Roozbeh Cheshmi and Ramin Rezaeian scored for Iran, with the first a stunning strike from outside the box and the second a tidy finish after a counter.
The win (just their third World Cup victory in their history) means Iran go into their final group stage game against the USA knowing a win could get them through to the last 16 depending on how the U.S. get on against England.
Wales face England in their final group game and have to win and hope for help in order to reach the last 16.
Wales fail to show up as Iran slice them open on the counter
Iran deserved this win and were the better team for the vast majority of the game. Wales didn’t show up for this game, just like they didn’t turn up for the first 45 minutes against the USA. This Iranian side sensed that and they had a goal disallowed, Azmoun hit the post twice and Wayne Hennessey and his defense were forced into action too often. Wales just never had control of this game and if the USA watched this clash, they will be extremely wary of Azmoun and Taremi up top in their group stage finale. Iran’s players are fighting as a unit, on and off the pitch, and this victory was a monumental moment for them.
Stars of the show
Mehdi Taremi: Gave Iran a focal point and the entire attack ran through him. What a talisman he is for this Iranian side.
Ramin Rezaeian: Rampaging display at right back and popped up late on to score a deserved goal.
How to watch Wales vs Iran live, stream link and start time
Kick off: 5am ET, Friday Nov. 25
Stadium: Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, Al Rayyan
TV channels en Español: Telemundo
Streaming en Español: Peacock (all 64 matches)
Red card! Wayne Hennessey comes off his line and clatters Taremi and is sent off after the referee uses VAR. Chaos.
At the other end Hosseini denies Ben Davies.
Great save from Hennessey down low. It is all Iran!
This is so tense now. Wales have brought on Dan James and Brennan Johnson. They’re going for it.
Iran hit the post twice in quick succession! So unlucky for Azmoun as he hits both posts in quick succession.
Iran have the ball in the back of the net... but VAR rules it out for offside. Ali Gholizadeh was just off after good work by Azmoun. Connor Roberts will be very relieved as his mistake led to the disallowed goal.
Wales have had a good chance through Kieffer Moore but he couldn’t get enough on his effort after a great cross from the right.
Key storylines, players to watch closely
Wales boss Rob Page went out of its way to praise Bale for his won and converted penalty, but Harry Wilson was probably the player who most brought danger to the party. Bournemouth’s Kieffer Moore grabs a first start of the tournament after his superb display off the bench.
Iran needs to find Mehdi Taremi often and Sardar Azmoun is fit enough to start in attack too. Iran starting goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand is out through injury as Seyed Hossein Hosseini comes in.
Wales quick facts
Current FIFA world ranking: 19
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 1
How they qualified: Qualified from UEFA via playoffs, Path B
Coach: Rob Page
Key players: Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey, Ben Davies
Iran quick facts
Current FIFA world ranking: 20
World Cup titles: 0
World Cup appearances: 5
How they qualified: Qualified automatically from AFC (Won Group A)
Coach: Dragan Skocic
Key players: Ehsan Hajsafi, Sardar Azmoun, Mehdi Taremi