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Iran Defeats Qatar To Move Closer 2018 World Cup Soccer Finals

Iran has moved closer to booking a berth at the 2018 World Cup soccer finals in Russia by beating Qatar thanks to a goal from Mehdi Taremi in the 51st minute.

The 1-0 victory in Doha before 10,000 fans on March 23 leaves Iran four points ahead in Group A with just four matches to play.

The loss puts Qatar at the bottom of the group standings, making it nearly impossible for it to reach the finals before it hosts the global event in 2022.

Tempers flared often during the hard-fought match.

Afterwards, the coaching staffs of both teams faced off against each other in arguments as the Iranian team celebrated.

Iran will compete against China at Tehran's Azadi Stadium on March 28. Qatar will play Uzbekistan on the same day.

South Korea and Syria are also in Iran's Group A. The winner and runner-up of each group advance to the finals, with third-placed teams going into a playoff round.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.


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