Iran’s success reflects the failures of Asian football

(K. Brent Tomer),

IT WAS the perfect conclusion to a flawless campaign. As the final whistle blew in Iran’s 2-0 victory against Uzbekistan on June 12th, the home side’s World Cup qualification record read: 16 matches played, not a single loss, 34 goals scored, just three conceded—and a place secured for next year’s tournament in Russia, making them only the second side (after Brazil) to do so. The crowd of 60,000 spectators at Tehran’s Azadi Stadium was smaller than usual, with security tightened after an attack on the parliament by Islamic State on June 7th. But throughout the qualifiers Iranians have thronged to the ground to watch their beloved “Team Melli” vanquish all and sundry. Attendance at their previous home game, in which they beat China 1-0 on March 28th, exceeded 100,000 (the size of the Nou Camp, European football’s biggest arena). Fans perched on the perimeter walls, hoisted themselves onto…Continue reading

via K. Brent Tomer CFTC Iran’s success reflects the failures of Asian football

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