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Iran vs United States, FIFA World Cup 2022, Today Match Prediction

Al-Thumama, Al-Thumama Stadium

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Political enemies Iran and USA clash in nervy Group B decider

  • Iran have the upper hand in Group B, sitting on four points in 2nd place
  • USA have earned two draws from games against Wales and England
  • Game is played against a backdrop of political tension among nations

USA to win 1-0

Tournament: FIFA World Cup 2022 | Venue: Al-Thumama, Al-Thumama Stadium

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Group B is one where all four teams can technically qualify for the Round of 16, although Iran and the USA have their destinies in their own hands coming into this game.

The task for both nations is straightforward – if they win, they go through to the knockout stages. Other than that, it becomes a little more complex. 

As Iran are currently in 2nd place, a draw should be enough for them to progress, unless Wales beat England. A draw would not be enough for the USA regardless of results elsewhere.

It’s a dangerous situation for these teams to be in, and it will certainly effect the tactics they employ here. 

The USA looked strong in parts against England, while Iran showed their quality late on with a last-gasp victory over Wales.

It really is all to play for here.

Iran Preview

FIFA Ranking: 20

Predicted Finish: Group Stage

Reasons to be cheerful:

     Are in the stronger position only needing to avoid defeat

     Were much improved against Wales in last game

Reasons to be fearful:

     The USA will be a superior challenge to Wales

     Azmoun is a fitness doubt while Jahanbakhsh is suspended

Iran took 98 minutes to finally overcome Wales in their last game, although it was a contest in which neither team really looked like winning.

In the end, a 2-0 scoreline flatters the Middle Eastern nation, although it does now put them in pole position to head through to the Round of 16. Avoid defeat here and they’ll do just that.

They will have a much more difficult opponent to overcome here, of course. Although the United States are yet to win a game at this tournament, their energetic displays have caused teams problems and they’ll be sure to do that here.

To their credit, Iran have showed dramatic improvement since their opening game defeat against England. That 6-2 defeat did no favours to their goal difference, but they won’t need to worry about that if they can overcome this hurdle.

Star Man – Mehdi Taremi

With Azmoun potentially injured here, Taremi will need to shoulder the goalscoring burden. He has two goals and an assist from his two matches so far.

United States Preview

FIFA Ranking: 16

Predicted Finish: Round of 16

Reasons to be cheerful

     Were the better team in patches against England

     Pace of their attack will cause Iran issues

Reasons to be fearful

     Just one goal and no wins from two games

     Yet to settle on a strike partner for Weah

For large parts of the game against England, the USA looked dangerous and a team full of youth, pace and ability. 

Christian Pulisic is thriving for his country after being handed a key role (take note, Chelsea) and Timothy Weah looks like he has pace to burn upfront.

As yet, the States haven’t been able to settle on a strike partner for Weah. In the first game against Wales, Josh Sargent was given the nod although he was replaced by Haji Wright for the England match.

Their priority here needs to be converting the good play they enjoy in midfield into goals. Nothing short of victory will do here and they must focus their energy on finding the back of the net.

If they hit their potential, they’ll back themselves to get past Iran.

Star Man – Christian Pulisic

The Chelsea winger provided a brilliant assist for Weah as the USA opened the scoring against Wales and then hit the bar against England. He is thriving at being handed a central role for his country.

     USA should have the better of the chances

     First goal could settle it

     Expect a tense atmosphere from fans

We should not underestimate the political backdrop to this game, which fans of both nations have mentioned ever since this draw was first made.

There will be a lot of media attention on this game, which could make for a nervy situation for the players on the pitch. Hopefully we see an entertaining game.

The United States have the better quality, the faster players and a sense that this could be their year to cause an upset or two along the way.

They should win this, albeit by a narrow margin.

USA to win 1-0

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Author: Ross B.