Iran crowned 2017 AFC Beach Soccer champions
Kuala Terengganu: Islamic Republic of Iran were crowned AFC Beach Soccer Championship Malaysia 2017 champions on Saturday after beating the United Arab Emirates 7-2 in Kuala Terengganu.
The UAE’s Haitham Mohamed opened the match with an impressive effort which Iran goalkeeper Seyed Hosseini saved well, but it was to be Iran who would draw first blood, Moslem Mesigar tapping home from close range to hand his side an early lead.
Clearly boosted by their goal, Iran immediately doubled their advantage through Hosseini’s impressive strike, before Iran skipper Mohammad Ahmadzadeh’s fired a volley just inches wide.
With the UAE failing to make an impression, Iran struck again as Mohammadali Mokhtari’s penalty rounded off a fine first period for the Iranians.
Kamal Ali then went close with a volley as the Emiratis tried to rally. However worse was to come for them as Mesigar’s cool header found the net with keeper Humaid Jamal rooted to the spot.
It was to be Jamal who eventually dragged the UAE back into the game with an impressive finish four minutes from time, a brief glimmer of hope that shone even brighter when Haitham Mohamed scored following neat approach play.
It was, however, not to be for the UAE, as an accurate Seyed Nazem free-kick, followed by Amir Akbari’s volley and a Mokhtari penalty sealed a win - and the title - for the Iranians.