U-17 World Cup: Germany start favourites against Iran in Group C clash

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Panaji, Oct 9 (IANS) Germany will start as hot favourites when they take on Asian heavyweights Iran in a Group C league match of the FIFA U-17 World Cup here at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Tuesday.

Both the teams registered opening victories with Germany getting past Costa Rica 2-1 and Iran beating Guinea 3-1 on Saturday.

Germany had a shaky start before taking a lead midway in the first half through star striker Jann-Fiete Arp.

Costa Rica fought back to restore parity in the second half through Andres Gomez.

With the match heading towards a draw, it needed substitute Noah Awuku’s effort to score the winner in the dying minute to give Germany full points.

Iran, on the other hand, rode a splendid second half show to beat Guinea 3-1.

Germany will rely on Nicolas Kuehn, Noah Awuku and John Yeboah alongwith Arp, who has been named in the list of best 60 footballers born in 2000 by football pundits, to deliver the goods.

Iran have a watertight defence and they would give their all to hold on and eke out an upset.

“We did not get the start we wanted. The boys were nervy at first against Costa Rica but settled down and went on to beat Costa Rica,” German coach Christian Wucku said.

“They have the potential to play better and I am looking forward to see them play to their potential against Iran who play a tactical game and have a strong defence,” said Wucku. Iran, who play a defensive game initially and slowly open up the game in the second half, will be looking to repeat the same against Germany who look strong in their attack.

Iran’s coach Abbas Chamanian said: “Now that we have won against Guinea we need to counter the German as they are well organised in their attack and defence.

“We have worked out a strategy to counter and hopefully we’ll succeed and win tomorrow which will see us into the round of 16,” said Chamanian.

Squads:

Germany: Luca Plogmann, Alexander Nitzl, Pascal Hackethal, Dominik Becker, Jan Boller, Noah Awuku, Shaverdi Catin, Eric Majetshcek, Jan-Fiete ARP, Elias Abouchabaka, Nicolas Kuehn, Luis Klatte, Dennis Jastrzembski, Yannik Keitel, Kilian Ludewig, Lars Mai, maurice Malone, John Yeboah, Jessic Ngankam, Yann Bisseck and Marian Prins.

Iran: Gholam Zadeh Gomari, Satavi, Jalali, Esmaeil Zadeh Shahkola, Nasiri, Shariati Khameneh, Hosseinzadeh Tazehgheshlagh, Sharifi, Sayyad Manesh Shiadeh, Ghobeishavi, Delfi, Ashayer, Janipour, Davaran, Kooshki, Namdari DEhghadi, Ghaderi, Karimi Lishter, Sardari Amidabadi, Khaghani and Khoda Moradi.

–IANS

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