Hosseinzadeh: Iran Could Have Scored More Goals against China
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s Amirhossein Hosseinzadeh reflected on his team’s inability to regularly find the back of the net, after it was eliminated from the AFC U-23 Championship Thailand 2020 on goal difference.
Iran defeated China 1-0 on Wednesday but was knocked out of the tournament due to goal difference.
Making Iran’s elimination all the more painful, second-placed Uzbekistan lost 2-1 in its simultaneous match against Korea Republic, meaning a handsome victory from Hamid Estili’s side would have sent them to the last eight.
Hosseinzadeh said that Iran could have achieved the comfortable win it needed to progress to reach the knockout stage.
“I think everybody knows that we tried our best and we played very well in this match,” the 19-year-old Saipa midfielder told the-AFC.com.
“We had control of the match, we made many chances to score and we could have scored more goals. We have the win we wanted, but unfortunately it’s not enough to go on.”
“Maybe we were a little unlucky, and maybe we lost focus,” he added.
Iran arrived at the AFC U-23 Championship desperate to end a string of Olympic football qualification failures which has now spanned five separate decades, but the nation will have to wait at least four more years to return to the stage the likes of Nasser Hejazi and Ali Parvin enjoyed in 1976.
While Hosseinzadeh will be overaged to play a part Iran’s qualification bid for Paris 2024, he still has many years of football ahead of him, and he is already reflecting on his time in Thailand as a memorable step in his career.
“It was a great experience for us,” he said. “In the end we are so sorry to our people and we are sad that we have not qualified, but it was a great experience, and I hope that we can stay together as a team and be together again.”