Morocco 0-1 Iran: Late Own Goal Hurts Atlas Lion

Lynette Rowe
June 18, 2018

Two-time World Cup winners Uruguay will face a formidable opening hurdle when they lock horns with Egypt in their opening Group A clash of the FIFA World Cup here at the Ekaterinburg Arena on Friday.

Aziz Bouhaddouz's 95th-minute own goal sparked wild scenes of celebration from the Iranian players and fans in Saint Petersburg as they claimed only their second-ever World Cup win.

"We have had a lot of opportunities", said the 49-year-old French former footballer, adding that they would focus on the next match.

The boisterous atmosphere inside the stadium lasted long enough as Iranian players approached the stands where their fans were housed to celebrate the win over their rivals. Nike had blocked the players' supply of boots and friendlies against Greece and Kosovo were cancelled.

Morocco will now need a positive result when they play Portugal on Wednesday, before Iran play Spain on the same day. "Superman is only in the cartoons".

Spain on the other hand were involved in what could be match of the tournament after a thrilling 3-3 draw with Portugal to open their 2018 World Cup. Nobody is superman. What can happen is a group of people when we work together, we can create super things.

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When Bouhaddouz nodded in at the near post, Iran's substitutes could not resist rushing onto the field.

"As I said before the game, to make these difficulties a source of inspiration, a source of motivation, is really something very special".

And, when Team Melli walked out onto the pitch 45 minutes before kickoff for their warm-up, huge cheers emerged from those in white and red, all eager to see heroes like Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Sardar Azmoun grace world football's biggest stage.

"A new billboard just went up in Tehran's busy Valiasr Square to welcome the World Cup, and most importantly, let #TeamMelli know that they have the full support of the Iranian nation". Iran have equalled the continent's haul in just the third match of the Russian Federation tournament.

Morocco were well and truly on top in the first half, registering eight shots to two and maintaining 70 percent of possession inside the first half hour of play. I am so happy and proud of my team and my country, but wanted to wish you also all the best in you career.

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