STEPHEN PHIRI, Jeju, South Korea
IRAN coach Peiravani Amirhossein says his charges will need to dig deeper to beat Zambia in tomorrow’s FIFA World Cup Group C match at Jeju World Cup Stadium.
Amirhossein has described Zambia as one of the best teams at the tournament in South Korea.
He said in an interview after his charges beat Costa Rica 1-0 on Sunday that the African champions are a top-drawer team.
The winner will qualify for the round of 16. Zambia and Iran have three points apiece but the young Chipolopolo have a better goal aggregate after overcoming Portugal 2-1 in an early kick-off at the same venue.
Portugal and Costa Rica have no points.
Amirhossein said much as his side was rejoicing winning their first match at the World Cup in 40 years, there was need to put eyes on the ball.
He said he watched Zambia battle it out against Portugal and expects a tough encounter.
“I expect a good match because it would pit two sides wanting qualification to the round of 16. I watched the last minutes of the game but thanks, luckily, I had my analysing group watching the game for me and we picked something from the game. Portugal had lots of chances but did not take them,” Amirhossein said.
He, however, admitted that his team struggled in the first half against Costa Rica but a half-time pep talk made a difference.
“The first match is always difficult at a competition, my players failed to play our usual game in the first half but after half-time, when we switched defence into
attack we scored and let me assure the Iranian fans that this will definitely not be the last victory,” he said