Mexico score three against Iran in Group D
Sunday, June 11, 2006
The first half of this Group D tie ended 1-1 and it appeared to be a close contest between two hard-working teams. Then the Mexican coach Ricardo La Volpe, who was observed smoking a cigarette during the game, made two substitutions at half time. This seemed to change the game.
Shifting from three to two forwards, in the second half the Central Americans won the ball more often in midfield; they then piled pressure on the Iranian goal with an effective short passing game. Iran failed to adequately adapt to this tactical change.
With 15 minutes remaining an Iranian defensive error led to the game-winning goal, and a great flowing move four minutes later made the result look convincing for Mexico.
The Mexican team did lose experienced striker Jared Borgetti to what seemed to be a leg muscle injury on 46 minutes. This will be a concern to the coach. But the majestic performance of captain Rafael Marquez, who seemed to be nearly everywhere, ensured onfield leadership was unaffected.
His team had to wait a while for the go-ahead goal. On 75 minutes Ebrahim Mirzapour's clearance fell short; his centre back then failed to control the ball and Omar Bravo was put through to slide the ball in for his second goal. In the first half Bravo had deflected a Guillermo Franco header into the net for his first.
Iran, in all red kit, had a good first period but was out-played in the second. Iran equalised from a goalkeeper error on 36 minutes. Centre back Yahya Golmohammadi poked into the top of an empty net after Mexico keeper Oswaldo Sanchez had leaped and missed at a ball crossed in from a corner kick.
Branko Ivankovic's Iran side conceded the third goal on 79 minutes, Mexico's familiar green and white shirts now swarming all over the Iranian defence. Zinha passed the ball wide to the right of the penalty area. Zinha, surging forward, rose unmarked on the penalty spot to greet the cross and guided the ball into the bottom right corner of Mirzapour's net.
|June 11, 2006
|36' Golmohammadi||Bravo 28' 75'
- 01 E Mirzapour
- 04 Y Golmohammadi
- 05 R Rezaei
- 13 H Kaabi
- 20 M Nosrati (Substituted: 81' A Borhani)
- 02 M Mahdavikia
- 06 J Nekounam 55'
- 08 A Karimi (Substituted: 62' M Madanchi)
- 14 A Teymourian
- 09 V Hashemian
- 10 A Daei
- 01 O Sanchez
- 03 C Salcido 91'
- 16 M Mendez
- 05 R Osorio
- 14 G Pineda
- 04 R Marquez
- 06 G Torrado 18' (Substituted: 45' L Perez)
- 08 P Pardo
- 10 G Franco (Substituted: 45' A Zinha)
- 09 J Borgetti (Substituted: 52' F Fonseca)
- 19 O Bravo
- "Portugal win against World Cup first timers in Group D" — Wikinews, June 11, 2006