The Iran men’s national football team, domestically known as Team Melli, has defeated Algeria in a friendly fixture as part of its preparations for the 2018 Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) World Cup.
On Tuesday evening, Team Melli beat the Fennecs 2-1 at the Liebenauer Stadium, sponsored as the Merkur-Arena, in the Austrian city of Graz. The match gave the Iranian footballers some competitive testing before starting their World Cup campaign against Morocco, which has the same style of football as that of Algeria.
Iranian professional footballer Sardar Azmoun found the back of the net with a header in the 11th minute, before Mehdi Taremi, who plays for the Qatari al-Gharafa Football Club, scored another goal eight minutes later to make it 2-0.
Algeria’s 27-year-old center-back Farouk Chafai pulled a goal back in the 56th minute with a header.
During the official 2018 FIFA World Cup draw ceremony at Kremlin State Palace in the Russian capital city of Moscow on December 1, Team Melli joined the Portugal national football team, nicknamed A Selecção, Spain’s La Furia Roja and Atlas Lions of Morocco in the preliminary round of the tournament.
The host nation, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Uruguay form Group A in the upcoming quadrennial international sports event.
France is drawn in Group C, and is pitted against Australia, Peru and Denmark.
Argentina, Iceland, Croatia and Nigeria are drawn in Group D.
Group E consists of Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia.
While the 2014 FIFA World Cup champion Germany, Mexico, Sweden and South Korea shape Group F, Belgium, Panama, Tunisia and England are in Group G.
Group H has Poland, Senegal, Colombia and Japan.
The 2018 FIFA World Cup will take place from June 14 to July 15. Russia will open the event against Saudi Arabia in a Group A fixture at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium.
A total of 64 matches will be played in 12 venues located in 11 cities.
Iran will start its World Cup campaign against Morocco at Krestovsky Stadium in Saint Petersburg, Russia, on June 15.