Who: Iran vs Qatar
What: AFC Asian Cup 2023 semifinal
When: Wednesday, February 6, 2024, 6pm (15:00 GMT)
The place: Al Thumama Stadium, Doha, Qatar
Qatar coach Tintin Marquez Lopez says his facet will face their “hardest check” within the defence of their Asian Cup crown after they face Iran within the semifinals on Wednesday.
The Spaniard has bemoaned the shortage of time since their quarterfinal victory towards Uzbekistan on Saturday, wherein the Maroons survived a scare after further time and penalties.
“If we discuss preparation for the sport, it was a really brief time,” he mentioned. “We had solely two days to organize.
“The sport would be the hardest match of the match for us.”
Qatar had been unbeaten within the victorious 2019 marketing campaign and are but to style defeat on this version. Certainly, the draw after further time with Uzbekistan was the primary time they did not win a match within the 2023 match.
‘We hope to carry pleasure to our followers’
Tarek Salman returned to the defence for Qatar within the quarterfinals, having been named among the many substitutes within the 2-1 spherical of 16 victory towards Palestine.
The defender echoed the ideas of his supervisor that the restoration time is a priority and that those that performed within the Uzbekistan win are feeling fatigued. However he hopes the event can carry the crew.
“Everybody is happy; towards Iran it will likely be bodily,” Salman mentioned.
“They’ve stars who play in huge leagues in Europe so we’re motivated 200 %.
“We hope to carry pleasure to our followers.”
— Qatar Soccer Affiliation (@QFA_EN) February 3, 2024
Iran midfielder Saeid Ezatolahi, in the meantime, has raised doubts in regards to the AFC appointing an Arab referee for his or her Asian Cup semifinal conflict towards the hosts and defending champions
Wednesday’s semifinal might be officiated by Kuwait’s Ahmad Al-Ali, who has taken cost of two group video games and a last-16 tie on the match.
“What’s just a little bit shocking for us is that the referee for the match is from Kuwait, he’s an Arab,” Ezatolahi informed reporters on Tuesday.
“We’re simply questioning the way it’s attainable that they put an Arab as a referee for the match.
“However we’re the Iran nationwide crew, we’re a really huge crew. We now have excellent gamers, we’re skilled.”
Iran reached the semifinals after they beat Asia’s top-ranked facet Japan 2-1 regardless of themselves having solely two days to get well after their last-16 tie towards Syria went to further time and penalties.
Ezatolahi, like Lopez and Tarek, has criticised the shortage of restoration time within the knockout stage.
“On this match, the gamers didn’t have sufficient time to get well, particularly within the knockout stage,” he mentioned.
“Most of the gamers got here straight from their golf equipment and are beneath numerous strain right here.”
The #AsianCup2023 SEMI-FINALISTS!
— AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023 (@Qatar2023en) February 3, 2024
‘We now have to be stronger than the whole lot occurring’
Iran coach Amir Ghalenoei reiterated the remaining interval being “lower than 72 hours” earlier than they confronted Japan whereas he additionally took a shot on the video assistant referee (VAR).
“On this match no less than, I can say that VAR was not very type to us. We had a state of affairs within the match towards Japan that might have been a penalty on Sardar Azmoun, however VAR didn’t test it for us,” he mentioned.
“However we have now to be stronger than the whole lot that’s occurring at this match.”
Iran beat Qatar 4-0 in October, however Ghalenoei urged his crew to neglect about earlier outcomes as they search a spot of their first remaining since they gained their third title in 1976.
“When Qatar reached the semifinals, they confirmed their high quality, so we have to neglect our consequence towards Qatar and neglect our efficiency towards Japan. That belongs to historical past now,” he mentioned.
“We have to present extra high quality and we have now to cowl extra distance in contrast with the match towards Japan. I hope we are able to attain the ultimate after practically 50 years. I’ve huge perception in our gamers.”
Jordan have misplaced as soon as on the match already after they went all the way down to Bahrain within the group stage match. Nonetheless, they do have three wins to South Korea’s two. The final two wins had been inside 90 minutes, the place the Koreans required further time of their two knock-out video games to date.
Qatar: W W W W W
Iran: W W W W W
Qatar crew information
Qatar have a completely match squad to choose from, bar for a slight concern over backup keeper Salah Zakaria.
Predicted XI: Meshaal Barsham, Pedro Miguel, Mohammed Waad, Lucas Mendes, Almoez Ali, Tarek Salman, Jassem Gaber, Hassan Al-Haydos, Akram Afif, Ali Asad, Ahmed Fathi
Iran crew information
Iran welcome again one in every of their star gamers after Mehdi Taremi missed their quarterfinal conflict via suspension.
Sadegh Moharrami is ready to overlook out with a cruciate ligament harm, whereas Majid Hosseini is battling a sore ankle.
Predicted XI: Alireza Beiranvand, Ramin Rezaeian, Milad Mohammadi, Saeid Ezatolahi, Hossein Kanani, Shoja Khalilzadeh, Alireza Jahanbakhsh, Sardar Azmoun, Mehdi Taremi, Saman Ghoddos, Mohammad Mohebi