‘They went from soccer to soccer’: Carlos Queiroz claims USA is ‘BEST team in Group B’ and insists his Iranian side face tough challenge against Gregg Berhalter’s ‘consistent and organized’ opponents in clash of life or death
Iran boss Carlos Queiroz hailed the USA as the best team in Group B ahead of the crucial clash between the teams on Tuesday.
Gregg Berhlater’s team faces Iran on the last day of Group B in a must-see for the Americans with a place in the round of 16.
The United States sits third in the group, one point behind Iran, knowing they need to beat Queiroz’s side to advance to the round of 16. A loss or tie will see the US pack.
Iran boss Carlos Queiroz hailed the USA as the best team in Group B before their clash.
The United States sits third in the group, one point behind Iran, after draws against England and Wales.
Despite the high stakes, Queiroz praised the opposition and insisted his team will face a challenge.
Speaking at a press conference on Monday, the coach said: ‘[Tomorrow we play] against without a doubt, in my opinion, the most consistent and probably the best performing team in our group, USA.
‘They played very well in the first game against Wales and very well against England. All the other teams, including our team, we are not as consistent.
Queiroz insisted that Gregg Berhalter’s team have been more consistent than any of their group rivals.
‘So we know the difficulties we have tomorrow. We played a very, very good team, very well organized, with the same dream, with the same goal in mind.’
And he added: “I can say it like this: they jumped from soccer to soccer.”
Then, weighing up an age-old linguistic debate, he added: “I can put it this way: They jumped from soccer to soccer.”
The USA shared the spoils with Wales in their World Cup opener after an 82nd-minute equalizer before impressively prevailing over favored England to a goalless draw in their second Group B match, leaving them with two points.
But they dominated the game against The Three Lions, arguably having the best chances and could pose a serious threat to Iran.
While the USMNT need a win to progress, a draw will send Iran away as long as Wales don’t shockingly defeat England and victory for Queiroz’s side will see them go to knockouts no matter what happens in the Three Lions game.
USA had to settle for a point against Wales after Gareth Bale’s equalizer from the penalty 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 the protesters, but Iran’s government reacted by accusing the United States of removing God’s name from its national flag and calling on FIFA to kick the United States out of the World Cup with a suspension of 10 football matches.
The Tasmin news agency, closely associated with the Iranian regime, says Iran’s soccer federation will make the request to FIFA, soccer’s governing body.
The USSF displayed the national flag of Iran without the emblem of the Islamic Republic
The USSF said the move was to support Iranian protesters who were demonstrating against the country.
The symbol was later returned to the flag on the US website, but the US Soccer Federation’s move adds another political storm to the Middle East’s first World Cup, one that organizers hoped it would be free of controversy off the field.
Tuesday’s game was already fraught with 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 forgo the official flag on social media accounts to show “our support for women in Iran with our graphic for 24 hours.”