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Soccer: Iran defeats Iraq in Olympic qualifier

Source: Mehr News Agency

Iran overcame Iraq 1-0 in the second-round 2012 Olympic soccer qualifier on Sunday.

In the match played at the Francousse Al Hareeri Stadium in Arbil City, Iraq, Mohsen Mosalman scored Iran's only goal on the half hour mark in the first leg. The two teams will meet again on June 23 in Tehran's Azadi stadium.

"Congratulations to both teams for their performances. Also, I thank Arbil people because of good hospitality," Iran coach Ali-Reza Mansourian said in the post match press conference .

"Iran has not yet qualified for the next stage. We are going to defeat them in the second leg in front of our fans," he added.

The neighboring countries have both qualified for the Olympics four times.

Iraq played in 1980, 1984, 1988 and 2004, when it reached the semi-finals. Iran qualified in 1964, 1972, 1976 and 1980.

Asia have 3.5 places at the 2012 Games, with the 12 winners of the second round clashes to be divided into three groups of four teams in the third round.

The three group winners will qualify while the three runners up will meet in next March for a three way tournament to decide who wins the right to face an African nation for a place in London.

... Payvand News - 06/20/11 ... --

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