Iran tied South Korea 0-0 on 31 August and the last qualifier will be played against Syria on 5 September in Tehran, in the mean time I want to break down the players called up by Carlos Queiroz.
Alireza Beiranvand – Persepolis
Hamed Lak – Foolad
Alireza Haghighi – AFC Eskilstuna, SWEDEN
I definitely was not surprised to see Haghighi called up after a long absence. He deserved it due to his recent form and consistent starts in goal for Eskilstuna in Sweden. No surprise that Beiranvand was in goal for Iran but I am thinking that Haghighi will claim back his starting job for Iran if he continues his consistent play. I like Beiranvand but many say that he isn’t Iran’s best keeper. In all honesty, everyone says Mehdi Rahmati is the best keeper in Iran but we all know he won’t be called up as long as CQ is coach of Team Melli.
Vouria Ghafoori – Esteghlal Tehran
Roozbeh Cheshmi – Esteghlal Tehran
Seyed Jalal Hosseini – Persepolis
Mohamad Ansari – Persepolis
Saeid Aghaei- Sepahan
Ramin Rezaeian – KV Oostende, BELGIUM
Morteza Pouraliganji – Al Sadd SC, QATAR
Milad Mohammadi – Akhmat Grozny, RUSSIA
I like the list of defenders but I was very surprised to see Mohammad Ansari starting as a CB against South Korea. He had one of the few chances to score for TM but put his shot high over the bar. It was nice to see Cheshmi make his first appearance for Iran and I am hoping Jalal Hosseini starts against Syria.
Omid Noorafkan – Esteghlal Tehran
Saeid Ezatollahi- FK Rostov, RUSSIA
Ehsan Hajsafi – Panionios Athens, GREECE
Ali Karimi – free agent
Ashkan Dejagah – free agent
Mehdi Torabi – Saipa
Vahid Amiri – Persepolis
Alireza Jahanbakhsh – AZ Alkmaar, NETHERLANDS
Saman Ghoddos – Östersunds FK, SWEDEN
I was really hoping to see Saman Ghoddos make an appearance for Team Melli but it appears as though he was not available even on the bench against South Korea. Naturally I am hoping he gets capped against Syria because we have seen Saman play very well lately in Allsvenskan and Europa League qualifiers. I think a lot of TM fans were surprised to see Dejagah and Karimi called up despite being free agents but Queiroz is the man in charge, nobody else.
Ezatolahi will be suspended against Syria due to his red card he picked up so I am assuming that we will see Ali Karimi or Omid Noorafkan start in defensive midfield with Ehsan Hajsafi.
Mehdi Taremi – Persepolis
Reza Ghoochannejhad – SC Heerenveen, NETHERLANDS
Karim Ansarifard – Olympiacos, GREECE
Sardar Azmoun – Rubin Kazan, RUSSIA
Azmoun was unavailable against South Korea due to suspension but I am pretty sure he will play against Syria. Let’s hope Sardar continues to score goals for TM!
I think its possible for us to see Karim Ansarifard make an appearance for Iran against Syria but whoever plays, I just want a victory. It would be the perfect way finish off World Cup Qualifying.