Tag: Korea Republic

Iran U17 through to the quarter-finals

Pathum Thani: Their morale might have been dampened after a draw in their previous match against Qatar, but Iran U17 responded with a stellar showing in their final AFC U17 Asian Cup™ Thailand 2023 Group B clash against Korea Republic.

Two quick-fire goals in the first half saw them win 2-0 at the Pathum Thani Stadium on Thursday and qualify as group winners for the knockout stage – their eighth time in 12 appearances and first since 2016, where they went on to finish as runners-up.

Iran will meet Yemen in the quarter-finals on Sunday 25th June while Korea Republic will face Thailand

#AFCU17 - Group B | Korea Republic 0 - 2 Islamic Republic of Iran

The pride on Hossein Abdi’s face was clear as he addressed the media after the match and praised the way his charges shut out opponents who had scored a tournament-high 10 goals.

“Korea are a very good team and we saw that when we analyzed them before the match,” he said. “We had a gameplan to stop them from attacking quickly and after that, we got the first goal and then got another one.”

“We closed down every aspect of their (attacking) game… I am proud of all the things they did tonight.

“It was a very nice game with both teams playing tactically to attack and stop each other… I think it was one of the best matches of the tournament (so far).”

Byun Sung-hwan, whose team had already qualified for the quarter-finals after winning their first two matches, admitted that the seven changes he made to the starting line-up affected the team’s chemistry and usual style of play.

The 43-year-old congratulated the Iranians on the result and preferred not to dwell on the loss, believing that it is more useful and imperative to learn from the experience.

“The result was bad but I think we gained a lot of things (perspectives),” he said. “We changed players as the (more) important point was the quarter-finals; we were able to preserve the condition of the (first-team) players and were able to try many different options.

“Our original plan was to dominate the match but it was not that smooth-going. In the first half, Iran played simply, as expected, but our defense reacted quite slow… so we have to prepare to face that kind of playing style in the future.

“Through this experience, I hope it will be helpful for our team for the rest of the tournament.”

The victory was Iran’s second in as many meetings – they beat the East Asians in the 2008 final for their only title to date – and while it was one to savour, Abdi stressed that it was more important that his charges are able to enjoy playing, regardless of any result.

He had initiated more social activities after the stalemate with Qatar, where a dominant display did not reap any goals, such as putting on funny movies, to ensure they could recover mentally and maintain a positive mindset.

It appeared to work, as the Central Asians ran their socks off and chased every loose ball, and in a moment of spontaneity, did a few push-ups in unison after the final whistle to celebrate.

“Players at this age need to develop and they should also enjoy the matches,” Abdi explained. “I am their coach not only for today and yesterday, but also for the long term. 

“I have to know how to improve them physically and mentally…With young players, we cannot be forcing them to be like machines, we have to give them some good experiences, because they are players for the future.”

“When you win against a good team, everyone is happy and they wanted to show that (with the push-ups), and I don’t blame them for keeping themselves motivated. 

“We are not here just for competition, but also to share our feelings, joy, and excitement with each other.”

Match Preview: Korea Republic v  Iran

Seoul: Top spot in Group A is on the line when familiar foes the Korea Republic and Iran clash on Matchday Nine of the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar™ at Seoul World Cup Stadium on Thursday.
Both teams have already secured their passage to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ having wrapped up the first two places with minimal fuss, while the pair remain unbeaten after eight games.
The Iranians currently sit two points above the Taeguk Warriors with two games to play and if they avoid defeat in the Korean capital, Team Melli will go into their final fixture against Lebanon in Mashhad as firm favorites to progress as group winners.
Iran and Korea last faced off on Matchday Four at Azadi Stadium and there was little to separate the sides as they played out an entertaining 1-1 draw with Alireza Jahanbakhsh’s leveler canceling out Son Heung-min’s opener.
Since then, they have each won all four of their games, with Iran booking their ticket to the FIFA World Cup Qatar™ following a 1-0 victory over neighbors Iraq on Matchday Seven and the Koreans joining them after a 2-0 win against Syria on Matchday Eight.

Another successful qualifying campaign has seen the Iranians advance to the global showpiece for the sixth time, and third in a row, while Korea’s record is among the best in world football as they have now reached an incredible 10 successive FIFA World Cups.
The match-up at Seoul World Cup Stadium brings back memories of the final round of the 2018 AFC Asian Qualifiers when Iran, already confirmed as group winners, also traveled to the Korean capital on the penultimate game.

With Korea still involved in a battle for the second spot, the sides played out a goalless draw as Carlos Queiroz’s 10-man Iran posted a ninth successive clean sheet following a trademark resolute performance at the back.

It was another in a long list of matches in what is one of Asian football’s biggest rivalries, with the sides having met numerous times over the years, including in the past four FIFA World Cup qualifying campaigns.

The last three meetings have all ended in draws, while Iran had won the previous four – all by a 1-0 scoreline – as they proved a continuous thorn in the Korean side. You have to go back to the 2011 AFC Asian Cup™ quarter-finals for the last time Korea recorded a victory.

Ahead of the latest battle in the rivalry, Iran has been dealt a triple blow with captain Jahanbakhsh, Mehdi Taremi, and Saman Ghoddos all ruled out of Dragan Skocic’s squad through COVID-19.
Paulo Bento has few such worries with star man Son arriving on the back of bagging a brace in Tottenham Hotspur’s win over West Ham United on Sunday and Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Hwang Hee-chan returning after missing the last two AFC Asian Qualifiers due to injury.

The game marks Korea’s final home match in Group A as they travel to Dubai to take on the United Arab Emirates on March 29, when Iran will bring the curtain down on their campaign at home to Lebanon.

Korea Republic v  Iran
Venue: Seoul World Cup Stadium, Seoul
Kick-off: March 24, 20:00 (UTC+9)

Tough draw for Iran in AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020

Bangkok: Iran’s Omid Team has been drawn in what must be the toughest group of the AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020.
Joining Iran are the defending champions Uzbekistan, Korea Republic and China in Group C. The Thailand 2020 Finals draw was held in Bangkok on Thursday. Iran had no representation in the draw ceremony.
Uzbekistan will open their defence of the AFC U23 Championship title in Group C with a match against Iran’s Omid Team. It promises to be an exciting group as all three of Uzbekistan’s challengers will be aiming to win the title for the first time.

The fourth edition of the Championship will be played across three cities – Bangkok, Buriram and Songkhla – with the tournament kicking off on January 8, and the final to be played on January 26. Besides Continental glory, 15 of the 16 teams will also be competing for places in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, where the top three sides will join hosts Japan as Asia’s representatives next July.

Hosts Thailand was drawn in Group A and they will have 2013 champions Iraq, Australia and debutants Bahrain to contend with.
Qatar, third in 2018, 2016 champions Japan, Saudi Arabia – runners-up in 2013, and Syria are in an exciting looking Group B.

Vietnam, runners-up in 2018, have DPR Korea, Jordan – third in 2013 – and United Arab Emirates for the company in Group D.
Should Japan make the last four stage, the other three semi-finalists will be assured of their places in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Under newbie coach Farhad Majidi, Iran’s U23 had a disappointing showing in the preparation matches two of which were against the same Uzbekistan team which they will meet on 9th January 2020. With the powerful South Koreans, who are a title contenders in their own right, waiting next for Iran, it is going a steep mountain to climb for Iran. Realistically, Iran chances look dim for qualification but would be more than happy to be in the top two teams. China, the other team of the group have been performing well qualifying to the finals with ease after beating Laos 5-0 and Philipines 8-0 while drawing with host Malaysia 2-2. The Chinese have two friendly matches arranged in South America in Late November with Colombia in Bucaramanga and then against Peru in Lima.

The star-studded Korean team who are the Gold Medal holders of the Asian Games 2018 may include Tottenham Hotspurs star Son Heung-min who is 27 now. However upfront they have Hamburger SV forward Hwang Hee-chan and Italian Club Verona Lee Seung-woo in the squad. It is not clear if these players will be released for this championship.



Group C match fixtures

9 January 2020 Tinsulanon Stadium, Songkhla   Uzbekistan Iran
9 January 2020 Tinsulanon Stadium, Songkhla South Korea China PR
12 January 2020 Tinsulanon Stadium, Songkhla Iran South Korea
12 January 2020 Tinsulanon Stadium, Songkhla China PR Uzbekistan
15 January 2020 Thammasat Stadium, Pathum Thani Uzbekistan South Korea
15 January 2020 Tinsulanon Stadium, Songkhla China PR Iran

Iran’s talent excites Wilmots


Team Melli head coach Marc Wilmots is more than hopeful of Team Melli’s future after what he has seen in the past month.

The 50-year-old Belgian coach took over the reins from Carlos Queiroz early in June and enjoyed a good start to his tenure as Iran beat Syria 5-0 in an international friendly, before playing to a 1-1 draw against the Korea Republic less than a week later.

Tasked with ensuring Team Melli make their sixth appearance in the FIFA World Cup, Wilmots is confident his side can rise up to the challenge en route to Qatar 2022, praising numerous his players with Persepolis’ goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand and youngsters Younes Delfi and Allahyar Sayyadmanesh coming in for special mention.

“There is a lot of talent here,” Wilmots said in an interview with Sporz.be.

“I have a goalkeeper in my team who could play at any top club in Europe. I also let an 18-year-old attacker make his debut. He had already scored twice against Germany in the 2017 FIFA U17 World Cup. In the match against Syria, Allahyar Sayyadmanesh came off the bench and immediately scored a goal.

“And I am convinced that there are so many talents and we must find them. As a national coach, I like to look for different ingredients to make a delicious soup.”

Wilmots is clear on his approach of the game for Iran, which is a more aggressive and attacking style of football, emphasizing that the budding players will need to grow and adapt that playstyle as they climb through the ranks.

“And the question remains: How we want to play? Of course, you can’t change everything in three training sessions, but in the friendly match against Korea Republic we created 16 scoring chances. Iran were not afraid of playing attacking football.

“The younger players need to adopt the new philosophy.”

Iran, Asia’s top-ranked team, will identify their opponents for Round Two of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 & AFC Asian Cup China 2023 Qualification in the draw on July 17.

The former Belgium boss, who was also a Red Devil international, led the team to a quarter-final finish in the UEFA Euro 2016, and hopes that he can achieve a historic feat with Team Melli.

“With the Red Devils I always thought we were going to win that tournament. Now, that is different. But you can also surprise with Iran.

“Iran has not advanced to a World Cup knockout stage so far and it will be a good challenge for me.”

Photos: AFP

Iran seek qualification for world Cup 2018

  • Iran will book qualification for Russia 2018 with a home victory
  • Japan can establish a three-point lead in Group B if they prevail 
  • Both Thailand and Iraq will play for nothing but pride

Asia’s qualifing for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ is approaching its first watershed moment with Iran in sight of reaching the global finals. A victory at home against third-placed Uzbekistan will be enough to send Carlos Queiroz’s Team Melli through to join qualified Brazil and hosts Russia at next year’s extravaganza. Korea Republic, meanwhile, travel to Qatar targeting three points with their sights fixed at a potential second qualifying spot from Group A.

In Group B, Japan arrive at Tehran to take Iraq knowing that an away victory will move them three points clear of arch-rivals Saudi Arabia and Australia, both of whom are level on points. Trailing the giant trio by seven points, United Arab Emirates face a must-win scenario if they are to maintain their slim hopes of a play-off place. Join FIFA.com as we take a closer look at the upcoming action across Asia.

The match
Iran-Uzbekistan, Azadi Stadium, Tehran, 21:15 local time

The importance of the match needs no explanation for the hosts, who can progress to Russia 2018 with three points. Carlos Queiroz’s side will look to both their home support and dominant head-to-head record against the visitors which has seen them win five of the seven past meetings. The Uzbeks can take heart from their only victory against Iran, which was a solitary-goal away victory at Tehran at the same stage on the road to Brazil 2014. Samvel Babayan’s side are motivated by the potential of leapfrogging the Taeguk Warriors into the section’s second place with a victory.

Both sides enter the match in winning form. Uzbekistan defeated Thailand by 2-0 in a recent friendly while Iran beat Montenegro by the same scoreline with hotshot forward Sardar Azmoun grabbing a brace. Uzbekistan will count on veteran Alexander Geynrikh to continue his super-sub role while in-form Odil Ahmedov remains the man skippering the side.

The other attractions
Also in Group A, Korea Republic arrive in Doha hoping to prolong their undefeated qualifying record against hosts Qatar, having won three and drawn one from the past four meetings. Coach Uli Stielike has called back former AFC Player of the Year Lee Keunho to enhance their potency up front and the visitors will hope to pick the brain of midfielder Nam Taehee for some insider information, who recently earned the Qatar FA Player of the Year award for helping Lekhwiya to their fifth Qatari league title.

Syria entertain China PR in Malaysia aiming to cut the gap to Uzbekistan. The West Asian side will be keen to replicate their 1-0 win against the Chinese in the return game in October. However, they must make do without top striker Omar Kharbin who is ruled out through injury. The visitors, under Marcello Lippi, enter the game with their sights firmly fixed at three points, but their growing injury list sees both striker Yu Dabao and captain Zheng Zhi absent.

Iran’s Reza Ghoochannejhad (R) celebrates with teammate Soroush Rafiei after scoring a goal against UAE during their Asian Cup Group C soccer match at the Brisbane Stadium in Brisbane January 19, 2015. REUTERS/Edgar Su (AUSTRALIA – Tags: SOCCER SPORT)

Things in Group B look even tighter after Australia edged Saudi Arabia 3-2 in Adelaide on Thursday. The result confirmed the elimination of Iraq and moved the Socceroos level with both Japan and Saudi Arabia on points. The competition may become harder with three games left but Japan, leading on goal difference, are all too aware that they can establish a three-point cushion at the summit with a victory against Iraq. 

Elsewhere, UAE arrive in Bangkok knowing they must win to realistically keep their hopes of reaching Russia alive. The visitors have boasted a dominant head-to-head record with four wins out of five, including prevailing 3-1 at home in the first-leg meeting. An away victory may look within the UAE’s grasp but they will underestimate the Thais at their peril, considering they conceded three unanswered goals in the same Rajamangala Stadium on the road to Germany 2006.

Did you know?
Iraq and Thailand, both from Group B, are already eliminated with three matches left.

What they said
“We lead our group, we have no defeats and we conceded no goals. However, we are not yet in the place we want. Our game is not over yet. If we want to succeed, there is one price to pay. Victories never come cheap. In this moment, only full sacrifice will take Team Melli to the place we all dream of,” Carlos Queiroz, Iran head coach.

Matchday 8 fixtures
12 and 13 June

Group A:
Qatar-Korea Republic
Syria-China PR

Group B:
Australia 3-2 Saudi Arabia (8 June)
Thailand-United Arab Emirates

Iran up 2 places in FIFA ranking March 2016

 Team Melli maintained it top place in the Asian FIFA Ranking while climbing two steps up to number 42 in the world.
According to the latest FIFA ranking published today for the month of March in Zürich, Iran was ranked ahead of Senegal while one rank below Denmark.
In Asia , Iran was top with 672 points followed by Australia with 601, Korea Republic 579  and Japan 577.
2016 (100 %) 2015 (50 %) 2014 (30 %) 2013 (20 %)
Rank Team Total Points Previous Points +/- Positions Avg. AVG WGT Avg. AVG WGT Avg. AVG WGT Avg. AVG WGT
42 IRNIran 672(672.3) 627 2 321.98 321.98 336.87 168.43 439.32 131.80 250.48 50.10
50 AUSAustralia 601(600.64) 506 17 353.81 353.81 272.17 136.09 240.62 72.19 192.79 38.56
56 KORKorea Republic 579(579.33) 566 1 304.20 304.20 312.46 156.23 217.75 65.32 267.84 53.57
57 JPNJapan 577(577.02) 575 -1 266.44 266.44 335.96 167.98 213.61 64.08 392.56 78.51
60 KSASaudi Arabia 559(559.01) 562 0 380.91 380.91 118.20 59.10 297.06 89.12 149.41 29.88
66 UZBUzbekistan 549(548.8) 484 8 311.74 311.74 181.07 90.54 303.39 91.02 277.53 55.51
68 UAEUnited Arab Emirates 521(520.95) 517 -4 256.74 256.74 242.20 121.10 291.77 87.53 277.90 55.58
81 CHNChina PR 423(423.24) 351 15 234.48 234.48 245.50 122.75 132.40 39.72 131.43 26.29
82 JORJordan 418(418.02) 414 0 257.18 257.18 61.72 30.86 272.08 81.62 241.77 48.35
83 QATQatar 416(415.92) 441 -3 251.18 251.18 171.62 85.81 160.54 48.16 153.89 30.78
99 OMAOman 346(346.42) 342 -2 176.62 176.62 124.70 62.35 242.23 72.67 173.89 34.78
100 KGZKyrgyzstan 340(340.42) 324 5 255.80 255.80 66.96 33.48 41.48 12.44 193.50 38.70
105 IRQIraq 333(332.97) 371 -14 157.68 157.68 218.68 109.34 119.25 35.78 150.88 30.18
110 SYRSyria 316(316.38) 279 13 207.54 207.54 131.58 65.79 85.69 25.71 86.70 17.34

Iran leads AFC ranking .

Iran continued leading Asia in the FIFA Ranking table published today by the World football governing body in Zurich.

With a total of 716 points, Iran climbed to no 38 in the world , which is its highest ranking in 2015. This was a 3 step climb from last month at 41. Japan  remains second with 621 points and 50th in the world. Korea Rep and Australia maintain their chase to catch up.

Iran’s last match was a disappointing 1-1 draw away to Turkmenistan in the FIFA World Cup 2018 Qualifiers.

Argentina, which beat Iran in the last World Cup , climb at the top of the World Ranking ahead of Germany, while recently crowned Copa America Champions Chile climbed 8 places up to no 11. On March 26th, Team Melli beat Chile 2-0 with Javad Nkounam and Vahid Amiri goals in in NV Arena, St Pölten – Austria as part of the two teams’ preparations for their upcoming official matches.



Team Melli vs UAE AFC Asian Cup 2015







TEAM Total Points Previous Points Positions Avg. 2015


2015 Avg.
 1 38 IRN


716(716.27) 717 3 437.18 437.18
 2 50 JPN


621(620.98) 623 2 341.48 341.48
 3 52 KOR

Korea Republic

608(607.70) 587 6 371.92 371.92
 4 59 AUS


559(559.29) 532 4 364.41 364.41
 5 69 UAE

United Arab Emirates

487(487.14) 496 4 245.05 245.05
 6 75 UZB


453(452.76) 479 -1 181.07 181.07
 7 77 CHN

China PR

436(436.43) 409 2 271.46 271.46
 8 86 IRQ


382(381.99) 381 0 205.01 205.01
 9 92 JOR


355(354.72) 316 11 102.61 102.61
 10 92 KSA

Saudi Arabia

355(354.52) 329 6 160.94 160.94




Iran RANKING DATA for 2015

Rank Year Month MP W L D
38 2015 July 2 1 0 1
41 2015 June 0 0 0 0
40 2015 May 0 0 0 0
40 2015 April 2 1 1 0
42 2015 March 0 0 0 0
41 2015 February 4 3 0 1
51 2015 January 0 0 0 0


OPPONENTS ranking in the FIFA World Cup 2018 Qualifiers



AFC Rank World Rank TEAM total Points Previous Points +/-
 12 102 Oman 329 319 -1
25 152 Turkmenistan 167 99 21
 27 154 Guam 163 119 20
 28 156 India 161 161 -15