"It was a dominant performance from Iran" coach Carlos Queiroz, 5-0 victory against Yemen

Following a dominant AFC Asian Cup 2019 opener against Yemen, Islamic Republic of Iran coach Carlos Queiroz reveals the team’s focus was what gave them the 5-0 victory.

The competition had a quick start, with a few surprises in the earlier matches – most notably defending champions Australia losing to Jordan. However, IR Iran were good enough to stop any possible upsets to come their way as they ran rampant against Yemen.

Mehdi Taremi’s brace led the way for the three-time champions, with Ashkan Dejagah, Sardar Azmoun and Saman Ghoddos also finding the back of the net as the team cruised to victory to start their AFC Asian Cup campaign.

Speaking to AFC, Queiroz praised his players for doing their jobs well. He said: “Of course, it is always good to win and have a positive result when you have scored plenty of goals, as it gives the team the perfect start in terms of motivation and confidence.

“I really want to congratulate my players for the way they played. We are still at the beginning though and we are certainly not looking at results elsewhere as it is really none of our business.

“Having said that, some of the games we have seen so far have been, to be honest, a great lesson for Iran. I told my players that they had to focus on their first game, and some of the early results have proved that if you don’t play with focus any team [here in the UAE] can beat another.”

Up next for IR Iran are AFF Suzuki Cup champions Vietnam and Queiroz is hoping that his team come out the same way they did against Yemen.

“The match was a typical first game at a [major] competition as some players started a little nervously.

“However, I think after we began with such a high intensity, we started to force Yemen into mistakes and we were able to use that to our advantage.

“Fortunately, the first goal came early on and when that happens it is something which gives you confidence. We controlled the game for 90 minutes and we were the better team on the day.”

On the other side, Yemen coach Jan Kocian maintained his positivity amidst the big loss, as Yemen are making their AFC Asian Cup debut.

“Iran are a team full of experienced players, some of who played in last year’s FIFA World Cup.

“We only had a short time to prepare and our players are not as experienced as our opponents. The real problem for us was the quick goals Iran scored [in the first half].

“It was a dominant performance from Iran, but we will now talk to the team and analyse this performance. We know that we can play better than we did. I am sure that we can play better in our next games.”


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