18:35 / 09.01.2020
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AFC U23 Championship 2020: Uzbekistan plays draw with Iran 1-1
Photo: Tribuna.uz

Today, January 9, as part of their participation in the AFC U23 Championship 2020, the national team of Uzbekistan played draw with Iran.

The national team went ahead through an Islomjon Kobilov penalty kick just before half-time, but Iran drew level through Reza Dehghani’s 58th minute goal to claim a share of the spoils at Tinsulanon Stadium, AFC writes.

Uzbekistan grew in stature as the tie progressed, and their hitherto quiet striker Bobir Abdikhalikov made a telling contribution just before half-time, earning a penalty when he was brought down by Iran’s Mojtaba Najarian, with captain Kobilov sending Habib Farabbasi the wrong way from the subsequent spot-kick to make it 1-0 in the 40th minute.

Iran head coach Hamid Estili replaced Shojaei with Mehdi Ghayedi at half-time, and right from the substitute’s mazy dribble straight from the kick-off, positive things started to happen for Team Melli Omid, who were the stronger side after the break.

Their equalizer duly arrived two minutes before the hour mark, when Reza Dehghani poked the ball home from close range after his persistent pressing had prevented Uzbekistan from effectively clearing the ball during a penalty area scramble.

An incisive counterattack involving both Ghayedi and Sayyadmanesh gave Mohammaed Mohebbi the chance to put Iran ahead just six minutes later, but he skied his effort at goal, with Uzbekistan substitute Oybek Bozorov guilty of the same offence from an even better position at the other end of the pitch as the sides took a point each from a hard-fought opening encounter.

Uzbekistan face China PR next on Sunday with Iran playing Korea Republic on the same day.

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