‘They jumped from soccer to football’: Carlos Queiroz claims the USA is ‘the BEST team in Group B’ – and insists his Iran side faces a tough challenge against Gregg Berhalter’s ‘consistent and organized’ opponents in do-or-die clash
- The USA faces Iran Tuesday on the final matchday of Group B at the World Cup
- Gregg Berhalter’s team must win the clash to progress to the knockout stages
- Iran coach Carlos Queiroz praised the US team as ‘organized’ and ‘very good’
- He also claimed the USA had been the most consistent team in the group
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Iran boss Carlos Queiroz has hailed the USA as the best team in Group B ahead of the two side’s crucial clash Tuesday.
Gregg Berhlater’s team face Iran in the final matchday of Group B in a must-win clash for the Americans with a place in the last 16 on the line.
The US sits third in the group, one point behind Iran, knowing it needs to beat Queiroz’s side to progress to the knockouts. A loss or draw will send the USA packing.
Iran boss Carlos Queiroz has hailed the USA as the best team in Group B ahead of their clash
The USA sits third in the group, one point behind Iran, after ties against England and Wales
Despite the high-stakes, Queiroz was full of praise for the opposition, insisting his team will face a challenge.
Speaking in a press conference Monday, the coach said: ‘[Tomorrow we play] against without any doubt, in my opinion, the most consistent and probably the team that made the best two performances in our group, the United States.
‘They played very well in the first game against Wales and very well against England. All the other teams, including our team, we’re not so consistent.
Queiroz insisted Gregg Berhalter’s team has been more consistent than any of its group rivals
‘So we know the difficulties we have tomorrow. We play a very, very good team, very well organized, with the same dream, with the same goal in mind.’
He added: ‘I can say it like this: They jumped from soccer to football.’
Then, weighing into an age-old linguistic debate, he added: ‘I can say it like this: They jumped from soccer to football.’
The USA shared the spoils with Wales in its World Cup opener after an 82nd-minute equalizer before impressively holding favorites England to a goalless draw in its second Group B game, leaving it with two points.
But it dominated the game against The Three Lions, arguably having the better chances and could pose a serious threat to Iran.
While the USMNT needs a win to progress, a tie will send Iran through as long as Wales don’t surprisingly beat England and victory for Queiroz’s side will se them make the knockouts not matter what happens in The Three Lions’ game.
The USA had to settle for a point against Wales after Gareth Bale’s equalizer from the spot
Queiroz’s comments come amid tension between the two camps after the US soccer federation displayed Iran’s national flag on social media without the emblem of the Islamic Republic.
The USSF said the move was to support protesters but Iran’s government reacted by accusing America of removing the name of God from their national flag and called for FIFA to kick the USA out of the World Cup with a 10-game ban from soccer.
Tasmin news agency – associated closely with the Iranian regime – says Iran’s soccer federation will make the request to FIFA, soccer’s governing body.
The USSF displayed Iran’s national flag without the emblem of the Islamic Republic
The USSF said the move was to support Irani protesters, demonstrating against the country
The symbol was later returned to the flag on the USA’s website but the move by the US Soccer Federation adds yet-another political firestorm to the Middle East’s first World Cup, one which organizers had hoped would be spared of off-the-field controversies.
Tuesday’s game was already freighted by the decades of enmity between the two countries and the nationwide protests now challenging Tehran’s theocratic government.
The US Soccer Federation said in a statement Sunday that it decided to forego the official flag on social media accounts to show ‘our support for the women in Iran with our graphic for 24 hours.’
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