Published: Wed, June 20, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Spain confirm goalkeeper for Iran clash

But Iran will be boosted by their 1-0 triumph over Morocco on matchday one, a win which has seen them top Group B. Iran with a big chance to test De Gea after breaking the offside trap but the final pass was disappointing.

"We're in a win-win situation because it's a unique opportunity for our national team to learn more about the game and to grow as players".

The most naturally gifted player in the Iran squad, Azmoun - who plays his football in Kazan for Rubin - was fairly prominent in attack against Morocco. "I have been wearing these clothes for a long time", Queiroz had said ahead of the La Roja encounter. But the 28-year-old could also be used as right-back instead of Ramin Rezaeian, who's more offensive interpretation of the right-back position might be the wrong approach against Spain. "Everyone who has been in the game for a long time knows that football is always capable of showing you something new, so it is not a surprise [that Spain sacked Lopetegui]". "He doesn't have a high strike rate [from free-kicks], but when he has his day... his first two goals gave him confidence and got him looking for his hat-trick".

First-choice goalkeeper Alireza Beiranvand, 25, slept rough earlier in his career while trying to establish himself and Nike withdrew its supply of boots to the Iranian players before the World Cup because of new USA sanctions. Spain, coming on the back of a disheartening draw against Portugal, have to show a lot of improvement too.

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Nacho should continue at right-back after scoring in the draw, while Sergio Ramos, Gerard Pique and Jordi Alba complete the back four.

Coach Carlos Queiroz said Iran will soak up the experience of facing World Cup contenders Spain on Wednesday but warned the Lions of Persia will produce their "best game ever" as they strive to cause the shock of the tournament.

- Diego Costa has scored eight goals in his last eight worldwide starts for Spain - he scored with both of his shots on target in their 3-3 draw with Portugal.

The suggestion that David de Gea is close to being dropped from Spain's starting line-up might appear ridiculous to anyone who has watched the keeper's consistently outstanding performances for Manchester United over the past few years.

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