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Iran's Ahmadinejad encourages national soccer team to be top in Asia
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08:07, March 31, 2009

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Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that Iran's soccer should be number one in Asia, the official IRNA news agency reported on Monday.

"Iran's national soccer team should utter the last word in Asia," Ahmadinejad said, adding that "the Iranian association of football (soccer) enjoys great potentials."

Ahmadinejad's statements came after Iran's national soccer team suffered a 2-1 defeat confronting Saudi Arabia in the 2010 World Cup qualifier at Tehran's Azadi Stadium on Saturday.

He urged Iran's Physical Training Organization to make greater efforts to pave the way for success of the Iranian athletes.

Head coach of Iran's national football team Ali Daei was sacked on Sunday due to the weak results of the team in the World Cup qualifier matches.

Iran ranks four with 6 points in the five-team Group B while the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) leads the group with 10 points, followed by South Korea with eight.

Saudi Arabia is the third with seven points and United Arab Emirates is at the bottom of the group with just one point.


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