Luckless Iran have to settle for point

Iran 1 Angola 1

Sohrab Baktiarizadeh pulled Iran level 15 minutes from time to earn his side their first – and only – point of the 2006 finals after Flavio had given the Angolans the lead on the hour.

The draw was the least the Iranians deserved after dominating the first half and, but for a glaring miss by veteran striker Ali Daei and several fine saves from Angola goalkeeper Joao Ricardo, the Asian side would have notched up the win.

“They tried to do everything they could during the 90 minutes but they didn’t have the luck,” said Ivankovic of his players.

The African side took the lead with a perfect breakaway goal as Ze Kalanga sprinted down the right wing before curling in an exquisite cross from which Flavio headed home.

But the Iranians equalised with 15 minutes to go when Baktiarizadeh met Mehdi Mahdavikia’s corner with a header to beat Joao Ricardo and end Angola’s hopes of a first World Cup win.

IRAN: Mirzapour, Bakhtiarizadeh, Rezaei, Kaabi (Borhani 67), Nosrati (Shojaei 13), Mahdavikia, Zandi, Teymourian, Madanchi, Hashemian (Khatibi 39), Daei.

ANGOLA: Joao Ricardo, Jamba, Kali, Loco, Delgado, Miloy, Figueiredo (Rui Marques 72), Mateus (Love 23), Mendonca, Ze Kalanga, Akwa (Flavio 51).

Referee: Mark Shield (Australia).

Attendance: 38,000

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