Iran into the quarter-finals with solid performance against Oman
Iran recovered from an early penalty scare to take control and bok their place in the quarter finals of the Asian Cup, thanks to goals from Jahanbakhsh and captain Dejagah.
Iran vs Oman: latest news
Iran vs Oman: preview
Iran play Oman in the last 16 of the Asian Cup, at the Mohammed Bin Zayed stadium in Abu Dhabi, with kick-off at 21:00 local time, 18:00 CET. A quarter-final tie against China awaits the winner of this match.
Ranked 29th in the world, Iran are the clear favourites this evening over Oman, who are back in 82nd position and have made it through to the knock-out phase of the Asian Cup for the very first time. Iran won their group, beating Yemen 5-0, Vietnam 2-0 and drawing 0-0 with rivals Iraq, while Oman scraped through from Group F as one of the best third placed finishers. They were beaten by Uzbekistan and Japan (2-1 and 1-0) and only qualified thanks to their spirit in pushing for a third goal against Turkmenistan deep into stoppage time.
Iran coach Queiroz is confident, but has seen enough grit from Oman to be taking the tie seriously. “The Oman team is a very good team. They have prepared well and have achieved fantastic results over the last year or so. They played 23, 24 matches and only lost two or three. They have a very good coach in Pim Verbeek and we must be careful against them," said Queiroz.
Oman coach Pim Verbeek meanwhile says ranking doesn't even come into it in matches like this. "We will do everything we can to advance to the quarter-finals. My players are excited and confident," said former Sparta Rotterdam player Verbeek, who has a wealth of coaching experience behind him.
Oman captain Ahmed Al Mahaijri meanwhile is excited at the opportunity to play Iran. "Iran are a very strong team but so are we," he said. "We played Japan and Uzbekistan and showed that we can hold our own against teams who are ranked much higher than us. "We have already created history by making the knockout stage but we are not satisfied with just that. We want to create more history" he said.
Oman's defence has been their strong point so far, having only seen 24 shots taken against them. Only Qatar (22), Saudi Arabia (21) and today's opponents Iran (16) more miserly at the back.
Iran: man to watch
Iran have a wealth of talent in attack, but Sardar Azmoun is their main hitman right now, having scored three in three at this tournament. The 24 year old plays in Russia for Rubin Kazan, and having made his debut in 2014 he's now Iran's fifth highest goalscorer. Watch his aerial ability, creativity and an awesome turn of speed when he turns on the turbo.
Oman: man to watch
The Oman captain Ahmed Mubarak Al-Mahaijri is 33 now and leads by example. He's also the most capped player in Oman's history, having turned out 166 times for his country. He scored a stunning free-kick against Turkmenistan and another moment of genius can never be ruled out when he's on the pitch.
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