0259 GMT August 18, 2018
The European side led from the start at the Coliseo Ivan de Bedout to reach their first-ever Futsal World Cup final, though it was made to work hard for it by the Asian champion, which had shown its pedigree in making it to the last four after victories over reigning world champion Brazil in the Round of 16 and Paraguay in the quarterfinals, the-afc.com wrote.
A scrappy first half saw both sides find the scoresheet before halftime. It was Russia that took the lead through Dmitry Lyskov, who made the most of some patient buildup to create a foot of space from his marker and shoot across Iran goalkeeper Alireza Samimi into the top left corner for 1-0.
Iran’s response came through a stunning free-kick from Ahmad Esmaeilpour. His effort curled around the Russian wall and into the top right corner, leaving Gustavo frozen in the Russian goal.
Russia restored its lead shortly after the break through Sergey Abramov’s sumptuous volley for his second of the tournament. Then came arguably the turning point of the match, as both sides exchanged goals midway through the second half.
Iran felt it had turned the momentum back in its favor when Ali Hassanzadeh showed great composure to make it 2-2. Yet, seconds later, Russia responded through its captain Vladislav Shayakmetov to leave the Iranians chasing the match once more.
With time winding down, Iran used the flying goalkeeper in a bid to draw level for a third time. Yet, with an empty Iranian net to aim for, Russia scored its match winner through Ivan Chishkala from his own half.
Though the task looked insurmountable, Iran’s never-say-die spirit that has been at the foundation of its Colombia 2016 campaign made the final seconds of this semifinal interesting, as Mahdi Javid converted on the rebound to make the scoreline a more accurate reflection of this hard-fought contest.
Ahmad Esmaeilpour (16'27")
Ali Hassanzadeh (29'12")
Mahdi Javid (39'49")