Iran scored two goals in stoppage time to claim a stunning 2-0 victory over 10-man Wales at the World Cup on Friday.
Roozbeh Cheshmi and Ramin Rezaeian scored in the 98th minute and 101th minute respectively to hand Carlos Queiroz’s Iran a real chance of qualifying for their first World Cup knockout stages, leaving Wales with it all to do to make the next round.
Rob Page’s Wales struggled to find any rhythm throughout the game and they faced an uphill task when Wayne Hennessey was sent off late on, before Iran made them pay. Iran have three points after two games ahead of their clash against United States next week, while Wales remain on one point.
England will effectively qualify from Group B with a draw against the U.S. later on Friday, and will effectively win the group if they beat Greg Berhalter’s men.
“We are gutted, there is no other way to say it,” Wales captain Gareth Bale told the BBC after the match. “We fought until the last second and we need to go again.
“We are all gutted but we have to pick ourselves up straight away. It is going to be difficult for us for sure. We will have to see.”
There were off-field incidents before the game as Iranian pro-government fans harassed anti-government supporters outside the stadium. In contrast to their stance against England, the Iranian players decided to sing the national anthem amid loud jeering from the Iran fans in the ground.
Both teams started the game well and Kieffer Moore had the first big chance after 12 minutes when his close range header was saved by Iran goalkeeper Hossein Hosseini.