Iran will be ‘much better prepared against Wales’ says coach after England drubbing
Head coach Carlos Queiroz has said that Iran will be much better prepared against Wales after a 6-2 drubbing against England.
Normally well-drilled and hard to beat, Team Melli were on the backfoot from the outset in the Group B opener at the Khalifa International Stadium.
But Carlos Queiroz said that their players didn’t have as much experience of playing at the highest level but that they would had “learnt a lot” that they would take into the game with Wales.
Wales play Iran at 10am GMT on Friday at the Al Rayyan stadium.
“My view is simple and very pragmatic: the game finished in the first half when we conceded the goals that usually the Iran national team is not used to conceding,” Queiroz said.
“Being 3-0 down, the only goal for our team was to enjoy the game and be part of one moment that we should keep brave, united, fighting and try to play our football in moments England allow us to do that.
“The beginning was clear, the difference between high-level competitive football, between players that are competing every week. Every single week.
“And our players that unfortunately don’t have the same experience.
“But what I can say as a conclusion is we win or learn. We had the privilege to learn a lot of things today with the English team and we are much better prepared now to play against Wales.”
‘Proud of them’
Iran’s defeat pales into insignificance compared to the dreadful situation at home.
The players poignantly stood in silence during the national anthem in a stand of solidarity with those being mistreated, imprisoned and killed protesting for gender equality.
Fans booed during that stance and Iran boss Queiroz was furious.
“Everybody knows the present circumstances and environment of my players,” the former Manchester United assistant manager said.
“It’s not the best environment in terms of commitment and concentration because they are affected by those issues.
“They are human beings, they’re kids. I’ve know them for a lot of years. They only have one dream, which is to follow the legends of the Iranian country, play for the country, play for the people, enjoy to play for the people.
“And I’m very proud of them. The way they stand up, keep fighting, score two goals in these circumstances. I’m very proud of what they did.
“But of course, if you want one example, 2014, 2018, we had full support from the fans. And now you saw what happened today.
“That’s why my duty, it is probably to invite the fans who are here already to support the team or they should stay home.
“Why did they come here to be against the team? We don’t need them. It’s much better they stay home.
“Because to have fans who only support the team when we are winning, we don’t need them. It’s something that the players of course can feel when they are playing.”
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