Brazil World Cup 2014 Schedle: Group F Fixtures. Argentina Vs. Iran 1-0:
Saturday 21st June 2014, Kick-Off: 13:00 local time. Venue: Estadio Minerirao, Belo Horizonte
Referee: Milorad Mazic (Serbia)
Argentina: Romero; Zabaleta, Garay, Fernández, Rojo; Rodríguez, Mascherano, María; Messi, Higuaín, Agüero.
Iran: Haghigi; Montazeri, Hosseini, Sadeqi, Pooladi; Nekounam, Teymourian; Heydari, Hajsafi, Dejagah; Ghoochanneijhad.
In previous match play, Argentina earned three points by winning against Bosnia, probably the toughest match that Argentina will play in Group 1.
Manager Alejandro Sabella first used the 3-5-2 formating in the opening game with Argentina but has switched a 4-3-3 style of sorts since then. Meanwhile Iran began their debut match in Brazil World Cup 2014 against Nigeria, who are the regional champs in Africa. The Iran Nigeria draw ended in a goalless draw.
Argentina’s 1-0 victory against Iran guarantees them a place in the next round of Brazil World Cup 2014, which means Iran will be sent home, joining others like England and Spain, reigning World Cup champs 2010.
The single goal from Lionel Messi, the one who Argentina expects will rescue them from difficult predicaments was a tireless achievement against an Iranian defensive wall that seemed unbreakable until Argentina’s captain lone goal in stoppage time.
This is a signature goal from Messi, who is used to scoring at the end of a match during club games like Barcelona. It certainly looks like he can work under pressure and he also seems to do better under pressure – a good attribute in final matches.
Goalkeeper Sergio Romero, watching the goal from Argentina’s goal post, said that Messi rubbed his magic lamp and scored. However, Messi is far too pragmatic to dwell on his feats of courage and skill saying in an AP report, “When I saw that I had scored I was very happy, because we were in added time already and wanted to qualify for the next phase.”
Alejandro Sabella, Argentina’s coach for the Brazil World Cup 2014 noted the tough marking by Iran, particularly on Messi, but he was confident that his star player would come through in the end.
A poignant piece of trivia about Messi is that Brazil World Cup 2014 is the third World Cup for Messi since he play for his country in the World Cup 2006. He also surpassed the 87th appearance record for Argentina, a record set by the feisty dribbler Diego Maradona. In a recent comparison, Messi has also surpassed the 1000 goals that Pele’ had scored to which Pele presumably said, “Messi and I. We are the same.”
At several points, the game vs. Iran could have taken a U-turn since Iran created plenty of scoring opportunities, despite their tight defending.
Although Iran lost to Argentina, they still have a chance of qualifying to the ’round of 16′ since Nigeria are yet to play Bosnia, which lost 2-1 to Argentina.