Spain beat Iran 1-0 with Costa's third goal of World Cup

21 June, 2018, 10:05 | Author: Cecil Buchanan
  • Kyodo News via Getty Images

The Atletico Madrid star scored the only goal as La Roja beat Iran, but it was his overall performance as opposed to his goal which pleased his coach.

Costa, who grabbed a brace in the 3-3 draw against Portugal, was in the right spot at the right time, his lucky deflection leaving the masses of Iran fans at Kazan Arena groaning in disappointment.

Indeed, despite having the worse season in Madrid this past term, Asension looked to be what was needed more so on the night, a more direct runner of the ball with a better eye for goal. That being said, Spain were rightly judged to have too much of a defensive focus given the opposition.

Before the match Keane also had a pop at his former assistant manager, and current Iran boss Carlos Queiroz, for what he felt was a disrespectful attitude shown towards him near the end of his time at Manchester United.

Dani Carvajal described Iran's tactics as "disloyal" even though Spain recorded their first World Cup win.

The win sees Spain move level on points with Portugal in Group B, while Iran and Morocco are third and fourth respectively.

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Spain was mostly unsafe from set-pieces, including in the 25th minute when a free kick from David Silva that took a deflection was stopped by Iran goalkeeper Ali Beiranvand.

In the first half, Iran played well and defended strongly and Spain could not score however they dominted the majority of the contest. It was Costa's ninth goal in his past nine worldwide starts.

Nothing to worry about, it's only the World Cup.

Iran began the tournament with victory over Morocco, their first at a World Cup finals since 1998 whilst Spain conceded three in a draw with Portugal.

Iran nearly took the lead after the break when Karim Ansarifard shot into the side netting then Mehdi Taremi headed narrowly wide, only for Costa to deflate their chances.

Queiroz had no complaints about the VAR decision which ruled out Saeid Ezatolahi's strike for offside, preferring instead to rue that it had not been around at the 2010 World Cup when his Portugal were beaten by a contentious Spain goal.

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