News ID: 319620
Published: 1024 GMT January 24, 2022

Iran given Women’s Asian Cup knockout boost after COVID-hit India exit

Iran given Women’s Asian Cup knockout boost after COVID-hit India exit
the-AFC.com

Sports Desk

Iran has been given fresh hope in progressing to the last-eight round of the AFC Women’s Asian Cup in India after the host was dropped for the remainder of the competition over several positive COVID-19 cases in the squad.

India failed to name the required minimum of 13 players for Sunday’s Group A match against Chinese Taipei, and its goalless draw against Iran on the opening day was declared null and void by the Asian football governing body “in accordance with Article 4.1 of the Special Rules Applicable to AFC Competitions during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The decision means a victory over Chinese Taipei on Wednesday will secure a place for Iran in the quarterfinals as the group runner-up.

Both sides are without a point, only separated by goal difference.

Chinese Taipei was beaten 4-0 by group winner China in their opener, with Iran conceding seven goals without response against the Asian powerhouse on Sunday – making the final group encounter a must-win game for Maryam Irandoost’s team.

 

‘Great experience’

 

Irandoost admitted after Sunday’s thrashing that her side was still learning at this level, and said their cause was not helped by the warm conditions in which the match took place.

“It was a very tough game, but my players tried hard until the last minute,” the AFC’s official website quoted the Iranian as saying.

“We have seen, even in the men’s World Cup, some great teams can concede seven goals. It’s the first time we’ve participated in this tournament, and it is a great experience for us.

“I do not want to make any excuses, but the humidity made the situation tough for our team. For the first 45 minutes the players did whatever I requested of them and showed their abilities, but in the second half they were so tired, even mentally, and they started to go down in the match.”

 

   
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