Iran is one of the top national football teams in Asia.
In Iran’s third consecutive appearance at the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, their biggest target is to make it out of the group stage for the first time in their history.
Here are the 5 best football players from the Islamic Republic of Iran in 2022, who would want to change their record at the Mundial on their sixth appearance.
1. Amir Abedzadeh
Iran is always known to go down with pride on the world stage. They do this with a rock-solid defense, and in 2018 they conceded the least goals amongst the sixteen teams eliminated at the group stage.
It was Alireza Beiranvand who managed the posts for Iran, while Amir Abedzadeh was the second-choice goalkeeper.
Four years later, the 29-year-old will face a stiffer test with England, the USA, and Wales with all their firepower lurking.
Amir Abedzadeh is following the footsteps of his father, former Iranian national team legendary goalkeeper Ahmad Reza Abedzadeh.
Abedzadeh will be essential because he played youth football in England with Tottenham and Brentford. He is currently on the books of Ponferradina in the Spanish second division.
2. Omid Noorafkan
Position: Left-back/defensive midfielder
24-year-old Omid Noorafkan plays at home for Sepahan, and his versatility defensively stands out.
The player can feature as a defensive midfielder and also as a left-back. He deputizes for the national team skipper Ehsan Hajsafi.
He may not have played at the world cup before having missed out on 2018 after initially making the provisional list, but he played at the FIFA U20 World Cup in South Korea in 2017.
3. Ahmad Nourollahi
Position: Central midfielder
Ahmad Nourollahi may be an unsuspecting source of goals for Iran with his ability to score long-range strikes. This gave him three goals in the world cup qualifiers.
Nourollahi plays for UAE Pro League club Shabab Al Ahli.
The central midfielder isn’t one usually caught out of position, and with his gradual integration and mainstay in the national team since the appointment of Dragan Skocic, he is set to play a big role at the World Cup.
4. Mehdi Taremi
Mehdi Taremi is Iran’s best and most popular player at the moment with his rise to European football and frequent UEFA Champions League experience with Porto.
Taremi is one of the best footballers in the Portuguese League.
He played in the last World Cup, and between then and now, he’s been nominated for the Puskas Award, top scorer gong in Portugal, amongst a couple of others.
Taremi, alongside Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Sardar Azmoun, have over 170 international goals between them. The Porto forward is seventh on Iran’s top scorers’ list, having scored 27 goals in 58 national team appearances.
5. Sardar Azmoun
It’s a dicey choice to pick between Alireza Jahanbakhsh and Sardar Azmoun for the final slot on the five best football players in Iran list.
Azmoun is one of the few Iran internationals who never played at home. He’s been in Russia for long years since he first joined Rubin Kazan.
Azmoun is the highest-scoring Iranian in the UEFA Champions League history and has moved to Bayer Leverkusen.
He has experience playing in the AFC Cup and is third on the country’s highest-scoring list.