Iran could qualify for World Cup next stage, Ashkan Dejagah says
Iran international midfielder Ashkan Dejagah said that the team has a chance to book a place in the 2014 World Cup next stage.
Iran has been grouped in Group F along with Nigeria, Argentina and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Carlos Queiroz’s men will play Nigeria on June 16 in Curitiba.
“We can go there (World Cup) and just play. If we get into the next round, it'll be the first time for Iran. Argentina will go through as group winners, but against Nigeria and Bosnia we have a chance. Why not? We have a talented team,” Dejagah told the Guardian.
“Sometimes people – team-mates, friends – ask me: 'How is it there?' I can just say it's a nice country with nice people. Other things, I don't want to speak about. Other things … I go there to play football, to see my family, to represent my country. That is what I know. I'm proud to play for Iran but a lot of people see just the negatives. That's why they're scared a bit about Iran. I can just say the Iranian people are very nice, and it's my country," he said.
"I know it's not easy to take friendly games with Iran but Queiroz has experience. That's why he can arrange these games. It's an unbelievable thing for Iran, to be in Brazil,” Dejagah said.
“I was born in Tehran. I have a lot of family there. I still count Iran and Germany as 'my countries', but I'm proud to represent Iran: a beautiful country whose fans love football,” Dejagah, who has grown up in Germany, added.
"The whole country is proud, even if we felt obliged to qualify. We had 100,000 people in the national stadium screaming for us, and we are the second best team in Asia after Japan,” he concluded.