Category: World Cup

Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan in Iran’s World Cup 2026 qualifiers group

The draw for FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifying rounds has been carried out. Iran, the second-highest seed in Asia, will be playing in the second round of the competition. The draw of the second round pitted Team Melli with Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and the winner of Hong Kong/Bhutan match which will be played in the first round of the qualifiers.

in the ceremony held today (Thursday) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the AFC announced that these matches are also the qualifiers for the AFC Asian Cup 2027 which is to be held in Saudi Arabia.

Team Melli will start its campaign this winter with a match against Round One qualifiers, which is most probably be Hong Kong. It is not clear if the match will be played in Azadi Stadium which is going through some heavy renovation and maintenance. Hong Kong is also in Iran’s group in the AFC Asian Cup 2023 in Qatar.

FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers Matches :

Nov 16th, 2023 vs. Hong Kong Home: World Cup Qualifier

Nov 21st, 2023 vs. Uzbekistan Away: World Cup Qualifiers

Mar 21st, 2024 vs. Turkmenistan Home: World Cup Qualifier

Mar 26th, 2024 vs. Turkmenistan Away: World Cup Qualifier

Jun 6th, 2024 vs. Hong Kong Away: World Cup Qualifier

Jun 11th, 2024 vs. Uzbekistan Away: World Cup Qualifier

AFC qualifiers for FIFA World Cup 2026

The seeding for FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers in Asia have been determined.

After winning the title of CAFA Nations Cup 2023, Team Melli would be busy preparing for the AFC Asian Cup and the next round of World Cup qualifiers. Iran will not be involved in Round 1 of the qualifiers but will start its games in Round 2.

The qualifiers starting in 2023 will be a marathon of matches in a similar pattern to the previous edition of the World Cup in Qatar.

The FIFA World Cup 2026 qualifiers will start in the Asian continent on Thursday, October 12. In the first round, 22 AFC teams from the lowest FIFA ranking will take part, with 11 of them will advance to the group round.

The second round of the qualifiers will see Iran’s presence. Team Melli is currently ranked second in Asia after Japan. The AFC second round of 2026 FIFA World Cup qualification, which also serves as the second round of 2027 AFC Asian Cup qualification, is expected to be played from 16 November 2023 to 11 June 2024

A total of thirty-six teams will be drawn into nine groups of four to play home-and-away round-robin matches. They include the twenty-five teams (teams ranked 1–25 in the AFC entrant list) which received byes to this round and the eleven winners from the first round.

Eighteen group winners and runners-up advance to the third round and qualify for the 2027 AFC Asian Cup. The third and fourth-place teams will advance to the third round of the 2027 Asian Cup qualification.


The 11 teams that advanced from Round 1, along with the top 25 teams in Asia, form a total of 36 teams that must be placed in 9 four-team groups. The classification of this round of competitions is as follows:

Seed 1: Japan – Iran – Australia – South Korea – Saudi Arabia – Qatar – Emirates – Iraq – Oman

Seed 2: Uzbekistan – China – Jordan – Bahrain – Syria – Vietnam – Palestine – Kyrgyzstan – India

Seed 3: Lebanon – Tajikistan – Thailand – North Korea – Philippines – Malaysia – Turkmenistan – Kuwait – Hong Kong

The top two teams from each group will advance to the third round of the World Cup qualifiers in the Asian continent and the third and fourth teams of the group are also eliminated.


The schedule is expected to be as follows, according to the FIFA International Match Calendar.

Matchday 116 November 2023
Matchday 221 November 2023
Matchday 321 March 2024
Matchday 426 March 2024
Matchday 56 June 2024
Matchday 611 June 2024

So close ! Iran beach soccer loses penalty shootout.

  • You can fit the population of Tahiti into Iran 444 times (178,133 vs 79.1 million)
  • Lowest-scoring match at Bahamas 2017

Tahiti advanced to the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Bahamas 2017 final after winning 3-2 in a dramatic penalty shoot-out.

The match got off to a very tentative start with both teams weighing each other’s tactics up. Peyman Hosseini saved Li Raimana Li Fung Kuee’s penalty in the first minute. Tearii Labaste hit the crossbar with a free-kick from distance, but other than that, not many chances were created.

The opening goal finally came midway through the second period when Ali Nazem jabbed home a shot from close range after a failed clearance by Heiarii Tavanae.

Tahiti eventually showed their experience and patience when Patrick Tepa scored with four and a half minutes left in the match. Captain Naea Bennett found Tepa with a calm cross and the midfielder timed his run before putting the chance away with confidence to send the match to extra time.

Neither side could find the decisive winner in the additional period, so the game went to penalties. It took 12 attempts to decide the winner in the shoot-out, but eventually it was Raimoana Bennett who was the day’s hero. His goal sent the Tahitians to their second consecutive final.

FIFA Beach Soccer : Iran advance to semi-finals for first time

  • For the first time in tournament history, all semi-finalists are from different confederations

THE DAY REPLAYED – Iran qualified for their first ever FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup semi-finals with a thrilling win in extra time against Switzerland, while experienced sides Tahiti, Brazil and Italy also booked tickets to the last four.

Iran advanced to the semi-finals of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup for the first time in their history with a thrilling 4-3 win after extra time against Switzerland. 

  • Iran qualify for semi-finals at Beach Soccer World Cup for first time
  • Iran goalkeeper Peyman Hosseini made several saves late in the match
  • Iran will meet Tahiti in the semi-finals

Iran captain Mohammad Ahmadzadeh scored the opening goal of the match with an overhead kick. He then put Iran two goals in front with a superb, one-time volley straight out of the air directly from a throw-in.

Switzerland then sprung to life and came all the way back from two goals down to take a 3-2 lead in the second period. The country’s all-time top scorer in the tournament Dejan Stankovic started their resurgence with a flicked finish. Glenn Hodel then scored a pair of goals to give the Swiss a one-goal lead.

With less than a minute on the clock, Ali Nazem scored a clutch goal for Iran to force the match into extra time. Iran then made history when Mohammed Mokhtari redirected Amir Akbari’s shot into the net to score the winning goal. 

Iran will now face Tahiti in the semi-finals on Saturday.

Four-time champions Brazil needed a stunning overhead kick in the final two minutes of the match to see them edge past champions Portugal.

Portugal 2015 runners-up Tahiti had to work hard against Paraguay, but late strikes from Heiarii Tavanae and Patrick Tepa helped seal their progression to Saturday’s semi-finals. 

Italy’s 5-1 win over Senegal was the most dominant performance of the evening. Coach Massimo Agostini’s side were boosted b top scorer Gabriele Gori (14), who appears as if he’ll never stop scoring in the Bahamas.


Iran Beach soccer lose the opener match.

Iran men’s national beach soccer team has suffered its first loss at the group stage of the 2015 Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup in the United Arab Emirates.

On Tuesday evening, Asian powerhouse Iran lost to the strong Tahiti national beach soccer team by two points in its Group B opener played at the International Marine Club in Dubai.

Both teams got off to a fine start, knowing that goals would be hard to come by. Tahitian sportsmen were steady in their offense and defense, fighting through a very competitive Iranian side.

Tahiti’s Tearii Labaste finally jumped at an ideal chance in the third minute of the first period to open the scoring for the South Pacific side.  

Heimanu Taiarui doubled the lead for the Tahitian beach soccer team two minutes later, and the world vice champions went into the breather with a two-goal lead. 

Tahiti beach soccer team retained the lead and Naea Tommy Irving Bennett scored his first goal four minutes into the second period, putting Tahiti 3-0 ahead.

Tahitians did not relinquish as the game extended into the third and final period. The 38-year-old Bennett took advantage of a marvelous opportunity in the 10th minute of the period, and tacked his second goal to make it 4-0 for Tahiti.

Mohammad Ahmadzadeh of Iran took up a great chance a minute later, and kicked the Persians’ first goal.

Ahmadzadeh made his second goal of the match in the 11th minute of the third period, and turned Iran’s deficit into 4-2 before the referee blew his whistle and called it a day. 

In Tuesday’s other games, strong contenders Portugal sank Mexico 5-3, Russia produced an emphatic 5-1 win over Argentina. The United Arab Emirates went down to Egypt 3-2.

The 2015 Samsung Beach Soccer Intercontinental Cup opened in Dubai, the UAE, on November 3, and will wrap up on November 7.

Argentina, Egypt, Russia and the host nation are in Group A.

Iran has been drawn alongside Mexico, Portugal and Tahiti in Group B of the tournament.

Team Melli Beach Soccer to meet Tahiti in the quarter finals.

Iran’s Beach Soccer team reached the quarter finals of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Portugal 2015™ after finishing runner up in Group C following Brazil defeat of Spain 2-1

The last match in the group stages saw the 4 times title holder Brazil narrowly beat last championships runner up Spain to create one of the first major upset of this edition of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup.

Iran will be playing against Tahiti who themselves upset all the odds by beating the defending champions Russia 7-6 in Group D. Brazil will be meeting Russia for a place in the semifinals.



Thursday 16 July

16 Jul 2015
Espinho Stadium
Brazil    Brazil  vs.  Russia         Russia

Portugal   Portugal   vs.   Switzerland Switzerland 

Italy  Italy   vs.   Japan  Japan  

Tahiti  Tahiti   vs.   Iran  Iran  

Team Melli beach soccer bow out in style.

Iran’s Beach soccer bowed out of the 2013 FIFA Beach Soccer World cup after a gallant display against the defending Champions, Russia.

Russia , who recovered a two-goal deficit to edge Iran 6-5 , booked a FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup semi-final date with hosts Tahiti. Dmitrii Shishin, the star of a stunning upset of Brazil in the Ravenna 2011 decider, settled an engrossing game in the defending champions’ favor with just 124 seconds remaining. The game which saw both teams exchanging the lead in three periods of the match was heading for a 5-5 draw and extra time, when a hopeful mild shot form the Russian Shishin bounced off an Iranian defender leg to end up in the roof of the net with Team Melli’s goalkeeper Hosseini at full stretch, but unable to save it and .

Russia were the heavy favorites before kick-off, but they were given a grueling examination in Papeete. Moslem Mesigar and Farid Boulokbashi fired Iran into a 2-0 lead and although Egor Eremeev swiftly pulled one back, the Asians’ stellar marking and physical approach largely stifled Mikhail Likhachev’s game plan for long periods.

Yury Krasheninnikov did equalize midway through the second period, before Anatoliy Peremitin capitalised on a seldom defensive error to put Russia ahead for the first time. That advantage lasted just 12 seconds as Boulokbashi thumped home his second to ensure the teams began the concluding third at deadlock.

Mesigar completed his brace shortly after the restart to restore Iran’s lead, but Russia began to exact their superiority thereafter. Goals from Kirill Romanov and Eremeev sent the Europeans 5-4 ahead, only for Mohammad Ahmadzadeh to level the scores, against the run of play, on 32 minutes.

Likhachev urged his charges to find a winner and cometh the hour, cometh the man. That man was the ever-reliable Shishin, who netted an engrossing contest’s 11th and final goal to keep the Russian dream alive and move himself joint-top of the tournament’s scoring chart.

Russia and Tahiti, who stunned Argentina 6-1 in their quarter-final, will now have a one-day rest before meeting on Saturday for a place in the final.


6:5 (1:2, 2:1, 3:2)
Match 28 , Papeete ,  To’ata Stadium
Goals Russia


Group matches

19/09  vs Brazil  1-4

21/09 vs Senegal 5-3

23/09 vs. Ukraine 2-3


Iran announces 12 man Beach Soccer Squad.

Iran has announced the squad for th upcoming FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Tahiti.


IRAN are set to grace the world stage once again when the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Tahiti 2013 gets underway this September. Having failed to make it to the quarter-final stage at their last four appearances at the tournament, the Iranians are looking to a new clutch of stars to put the past behind them.

Top of the list is striker Moslem Mesigar, a cornerstone of the team’s plans, who will be playing in his fourth FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup. Speaking to, the sharp-shooting Mesigar opened up about his dreams for Tahiti and looked back at some of the highlights of his beach soccer career.

Image change
With three competition appearances behind him, Mesigar believes the time has come to change the reputation his national side have earned in their previous four campaigns: “We’ve competed at the World Cup on four previous occasions and never made it to the quarter-finals. Our stumbling block has always been the first round. We have a lot to learn in this game but I reckon the time has arrived for us to make the experience we’ve accumulated count.”

“We are looking forward to taking part in Tahiti 2013,” he went on, “and we’re eager to set new benchmarks. Qualifying is our first target and if we manage that then there’s nothing to stop us thinking of going even further. Reaching the quarter-finals is a big deal and that is what we hope to do.”

Iran have played a total of 12 matches in their previous FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup campaigns, losing 11 of them. It was at Rio de Janeiro 2007, their second tournament appearance, that they managed their only win to date, beating Spain 5-4, before their winning ways deserted them once again.

Their most recent outing at Ravenna 2011 saw the Iranians put in their finest performance to date. Their tally of three first round defeats does not to justice to the quality of their play in a group that comprised Italy, Switzerland and Senegal. There were clear signs that the Iranian beach soccer team was finally making progress.

Mesigar certainly sees a pattern: “Looking at how far we’ve come, from our first tournament to our most recent campaign, we’ve improved our performances. We have played great games, taking on strong teams and making it hard for them. If we step up our preparations a little, I believe we can close the gap, though nothing’s certain in football.”

The hard yards
To get themselves up to the standard required for a tournament of this magnitude, Iran have been working flat out since they booked their tickets for Tahiti. Central to their plans is an intensive training program, as Mesigar explains: “When the Asian qualifiers finished at the beginning of the year, we drew up plans to develop our technical skills. Our Brazilian coach Marco Octavio has brought some new ideas with him, plus the latest tactics, and we will continue working hard to gain the attributes we need.”

Things have not been so easy in the past. “One of the reasons for our failure to win at past tournaments is changes to the coaching staff,” Mesigar said, “as well as a lack of adequate preparation for such a major event. We did not play friendly internationals against the big teams. Things have improved a lot. We are set to play suitably competitive warm-up games, which will definitely raise our standards. Our aim is to progress and in this game you need everything to be in place to ensure you give a good account of yourself.”

Hopes and dreams
Moslem Mesigar began his footballing career at Iranian club Shahin Bushehr before a chance encounter led him to take up beach soccer, playing for local side Daryanavardan. A move to Vision Tehran brought the youngster his first taste of success, with two league titles, three runners-up medals and the personal accolade of the season’s top goalscorer on two occasions.

His form soon brought him to the attention of the national team and he played in his first FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in 2007, retaining his place for Marseille 2008 and Ravenna 2011. As Tahiti looms on the horizon, Mesigar still has fire in his belly: “Looking back on my journey with the national side gives me the hunger to put my technical and physical skills to the test at a World Cup. I want to prove my ability alongside my teammates and show the world how much we want to make it to the later stages. We want to show them that Iranian football can evolve.”

“We got off to a great start this year,” the 28-year-old continued. “We put on some fine performances at the Asian Beach Soccer Cup in Qatar and beat Japan to take the title. It was a wonderful achievement. In that final I managed to bring the scores level in the dying second then I was the last one to hit the net during the penalty shoot-out. I also made it to the list of top goalscorers with 11 strikes. That was just terrific. I felt amazing and my morale is sky-high going into the biggest tournament of all.”

The Iranians begin their Tahiti 2013 campaign in Group C alongside Brazil, Ukraine and Senegal. Mesigar has no illusions about the size of the task ahead: “It’s a strong group and a tough one for sure. Brazil are the complete team and have been crowned world champions several times. But we will try to compete hard in all three games and make it through to the quarter-finals. We will fight with all we’ve got.”

Mesigar’s record with the national team is a good one. After taking third place at three previous editions of the Asian Beach Soccer Cup, he can now place this year’s champion’s medal alongside one from a WAFF Beach Soccer Championship and an Asian Games gold on his mantelpiece. In addition, he has twice finished top goalscorer in Asian beach soccer.

But the trophies and acclaim have not dimmed his ambition: “There is still so much to achieve. My great dream is to turn pro for one of the top European clubs. I will do everything in my power to prove that I deserve that chance and that an Iranian player like me has what it takes to play abroad.”



The Squad 2013

12 Mohammad HAJIPOUR
6 Mostafa KIANI
9 Mohammad MOKHTARI
10 Moslem MESIGAR
11 Mohammad AHMADZADEH