FIFA U17 World Cup: Perfect Iran top Group C as Costa Rica leave tournament with regrets
The first Asian team to get 3 points, the first Asian team to qualify for the Round of 16 and now the first Asian team to win 3 out of 3 group games. The 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup has been great so far, for an almost flawless Iran who against all odds have topped Group C among the likes of Costa Rica, Guinea and Germany. The team prepared well, respected every opponent and studied their opponents well as they scored 10 goals and conceded only 1 in their 3 group games.
''Yes, we have picked up 9 out of 9 points in the group stages, but the most important thing we must think about from tonight onwards is the next round'' said an ecstatic, yet calm Head Coach, Abbas Chamanian.
Speaking about his defence that kept yet another clean sheet today he said '' Indeed, our attack has been great but our defence also deserves all the praise it can get. We have conceded only 1 goal in the tournament and did not allow any clear opportunities to our opponents today, this is something we can build on for our future opponents as well''
A disappointed Coach Breansse Camacho said: ''We played a very strong team tonight and we made a few mistakes where we conceded two penalties. However, in the second half, we were very offensive and good.'' Coach Camacho was referring to two penalty incidents in a span of 7 minutes between the 23rd and the 30th minute where Younes Delfi was fouled in the box twice and Iran scored both penalties through Captain, Mohammed Ghobieshavi and Central Defender, Taha Shariati.
''The two penalties in a short span of time and the fact that Iran were forming a block in their half made it difficult for our players to score. We tried putting a lot of strong presence in the center of the pitch and it actually worked well initially, but the two penalties, the 4 player block and the fact that Iran had 2 strikers all together was too much for our team to handle '' said Coach Camacho emphasizing on Iran's technical prowess that was too tough to crack. ''We shouldn't have lost the Germany match at any cost. We also played a great game and dealt very well with the physicality of the Guinea team'' said a very regretful Coach Camacho looking back at results which could have gone in their favour.
Coach Chamanian ended by saying ''We must not forget that we are not the only team that finished with 9 points. Winning all 3 games does not make us automatic title contenders, there are still a lot of good teams that we must respect. However, it is still a very important achievement for the team and players''
Despite having won all 3 of their games, its great to see that Iran still remain as humble ever. Perhaps this is the key to their success. Humility and Coherence in this Iranian team seem to be a constant, game after game. Don't forget the 10 goals they have scored have come from 7 different scorers and that in itself speaks a lot.