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March 26, 2005, 07:55 AM
My favourite team in Asia Iran just got past the star studded Japanese side 2-1 in the clash of the titans....Hope they contunue the good form..cheers....
Hashemian double pushes Iran past Japan
25 March 2005
German-based striker Vahid Hashemian struck twice as Iran beat Japan 2-1 on Friday to throw their Asian World Cup qualifying group wide open.
Iran and Bahrain top Group B with four points each from two games and an identical goal difference in the final round of 2006 qualifiers.
Japan have three points after last month's 2-1 home victory over North Korea.
Bayern Munich's Hashemian pounced on sloppy Japan defending to fire Iran ahead after 25 minutes before a raucous crowd of 100,000 in Tehran.
Japan midfielder Takashi Fukunishi volleyed an equaliser against the run of play in the 66th minute after good work from substitute Atsushi Yanagisawa.
Hashemian rose to head Ali Karimi's cross past Japan goalkeeper Seigo Narazaki in the 75th minute to secure a precious victory for Iran.
Bahrain won 2-1 in North Korea earlier on Friday to move on to four points. Iran were held to a goalless draw away to Bahrain in their opening match.
March 26, 2005, 09:23 AM
is china absolutely kicked out? for some reason I really wish so...
March 26, 2005, 10:39 AM
Yup...they are absolutely kicked out !
March 27, 2005, 04:16 PM
Long awaited revenge for the central americans after being knocked out at World Cup 2002 by the "Yanks":
It seems right now that in the next world cup we will see some nations never been there before:
Ivory Coast, Bahrein, Ukraine, Guatemala all seem ready to qualify!
March 31, 2005, 03:01 AM
Iran outmuscle angry North Koreans
30 March 2005
Iran overpowered Korea DPR 2-0 in Pyongyang on Wednesday in an Asian FIFA World Cup qualifying match in which the home team and crowd of 70,000 at Kim Il-Sung stadium reacted furiously to the loss.
A first-half goal credited to Mehdi Mahdavikia but which appeared to take a deflection off a home defender gave Iran early breathing space in a very tight start to the game.
In the second half, Javad Nekounam capitalised on some brilliant build-up work by Ali Karimi and Vahid Hashemian to score from close range in the 79th minute.
The North Koreans, frustrated all game by what they viewed as decisions going against them, reacted angrily to not getting a handball verdict in the penalty box in the dying minutes and converged en masse on referee Mohammed Kousa.
The match was held up for more than five minutes as Kousa retreated from the angry pack of North Korean players and bottles from the crowd were thrown onto the athletics track surrounding the pitch.
Match officials were forced onto the pitch to help Kousa, who finally restored order and handed a red card to North Korean defender Nam Song-Chol.
After the final whistle, Kousa and his two assistant referees were left standing on the pitch for more than 20 minutes as more bottles, some chairs and other objects were thrown from the crowd.
Iran have now reached the halfway mark of the qualifying round on seven points and in prime position for a World Cup finals berth after a 2-1 home win against Japan last week and a goalless away draw with Bahrain in February.
Korea DPR languish at the bottom of Group B with no points after three consecutive losses. The top two teams in Group B gain direct entry into the World Cup finals in Germany next year.
The third-place finishers in the two Asian groups will play off against each other, with the winners facing the fourth-placed team in the North and Central American and Caribbean Zone.
Iran went into the game without inspirational captain Ali Daei, who travelled with the team but did not play after injuring his hamstring in the Japan match.
However, Iran have a depth in attack that is the envy of the rest of Asia, with 2004 Asian Player of the Year Karimi, Nekounam and Hamburg's Mahdavikia leading the charge on Wednesday
Edited on, March 31, 2005, 8:03 AM GMT, by Shehwar.
March 31, 2005, 11:42 AM
I can't imagine a World Cup without Cameroon in it....But it just might happen(I hope it doesn't!)....Togo, South Africa, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Morocco are leading their respective groups with each team left with only 4 matches to play....Only the group leaders to qualify for the finals....In Cameroon's case, they are 4 points behind the current leaders Ivory Coast..Cheers....Source (http://fifaworldcup.yahoo.com/06/en/t/group/index.html)
March 31, 2005, 04:06 PM
I supported Cameroon in the last world cup, now I am feeling sad too thinking they will probably miss the next one, but Ivory Coast have a great striker like Drogba.
We have to remember that they have lost two crucial players like Marc Vivien Foe (his death was tragic) and leader Patrick Mboma, retired.
But they still have good players like goalkeeper Kameni, defender Song and excellent striker Eto'o, they have to chance to fight back on the Ivorians... we will see!
April 3, 2005, 03:37 AM
is it true that Australia might be going into the Asian qualifiers
April 3, 2005, 04:27 AM
Yeah...The Australians are trying to get into the Asian qualifiers.....As for Cameroon....If they fail to qualify..a World Cup without Samuel Eto - the two times African Footballer of the year will be the ultimate disaster for the fans.....
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