Iran defeated defending champion Iraq 2-1 in their first game of the 2011 AFC Asian Cup on Tuesday.
Emad Ridha scored a goal 13 minutes into the match to give Iraq the early lead. Iraqi captain Yunes Mahmoud headed the ball in front of the goal and Ridha found the empty net.
Afterwards, Iran put Iraq under pressure and created some opportunities, but their strikers were not able to take advantage of them.
Then, with three minutes remaining in the first half, Iran's Gholamreza Rezaei escaped from the offside trap and fired home a shot from a tight angle to equalize the match.
Iran dominated the game in the second half.
Iman Mobali gave the Iranians the win in the 84th minute with a splendid goal from a free kick.
Iman Mobali was named the man of the match.
North Korea and the United Arab Emirates played to a goalless draw in the first Group D match.
Iran, which is also in Group D, is scheduled to play North Korea on January 15 and the United Arab Emirates on January 19 in its remaining group stage matches.
... Payvand News - 01/11/11 ... --