Iran’s U-22 team began its campaign for the qualification to the final of Inaugural AFC Asian Cup U-22 by defeating Kuwait 1-0 in Melaka , Malaysia. The only goal of the match was scored by Amin Haj Mohammad on the 76th minute.
In a one sided match that saw Iranian players miss many scoring opportunity against rare Kuwaiti offensive moves , the match looked like another classic Iranian performance of sustain dominance without scoring until Haj Mohammad broke the deadlock 14 minutes before the end from a immaculate free kick by Payam Sadeghian to the big relief of the team and the coaching staff.
In what was expected to be a comfortable match, especially after the brilliant result against the Italian counterparts just before the tournament started when Team Melli U22 won 6-2 , the outcomes was a familiar pattern of difficulty to finish the moves.
In the post-match Press conference , Alireza Mansourian , lamented at the fact that his team dominated and missed many scoring opportunities especially in the second half.
The Iranian coach said that he knew that Kuwait will be packing defense and depending on the counter attacks and he was ready to face such tactics. He admitted that the Kuwaitis executed their plan quite well and they were a touch opposition to break, Mansourian was satisfied with his own team performance and praised his players especially the defense line which kept a clean sheet and managed to contain the fast Kuwaiti counter attacks,
On the reasons why his team did not manage to score as freely as the lat game. Mansourian said the circumstances of the two matches were different. The Italy match was an open game where both teams were seeking to score , while in this competition , I expect most of the teams to tighten the defenses as their priority will be not to concede goals.
The Group C matches is currently taking place at a neutral venue in Melaka of Malaysia amongst Bahrain, Iran, Tajikistan, Qatar, Kuwait and the Maldives.
All the six countries were in action on the same day with Tajikistan losing to Bahrain 0-1 , Qatar defeating the Maldives 2-1.
Team Melli U-22 next game will be against Qatar on 25th June at Hang Tuah Stadium at 16:30 Local Time
Iran – Kuwait
1 – 0 (0-0)
Goal Amin Hajmohammad (76’)
Hang Jebat Stadium
Melaka of Malaysia
Iran: Piranvand ; Shirvand, Hajmohammad, Khanzadeh ,Esmaeilbeigi, Pouraliganji, Emani ( Karami 85’ ) ,Mosalman (c) ,Karimi ( Rezaei 63’ ) , Sadeghian , Gharibi ( Tabrizi 90’ )