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Iran Hosts Uzbekistan With Chance To Qualify For World Cup Tournament In Russia


Football fans in Tehran cheer during a March 2017 qualifying match for the 2018 World Cup.

Iran will play Uzbekistan in Tehran with an opportunity to secure a spot in the 2018 World Cup football tournament in Russia.

The June 12 match will be held at Azadi Stadium before an expected crowd of 100,000.

Iran, led by former Real Madrid and Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz, is unbeaten in its first seven qualifying matches in Group A in the Asian region.

"We know there is still work to do, but we have worked hard to get in a good position," Queiroz told the Associated Press. "We don't always have the same preparations that other big Asian countries have, so it will be a great achievement to make it to the World Cup again.

"It will not be easy against Uzbekistan, but we hope we can do it," Queiroz said.

Uzbekistan is in third place in Group A and would still have a chance to qualify with an upset victory over Iran.

The top two teams in each group advance to the World Cup. The two third-place finishers enter a playoff series for a chance to qualify.

Based on reporting by AP and Tasnim News Agency
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