Iranian star Ali Karimi was in buoyant mood after Iran’s national Team came from behind to defeat Uzbekistan 2-1 in their opening game of the 2007 Asian Cup. After a first half-own goal from Rahman Rezaei, the three-times champions fought back in the second half and goals from Seyed Jalal Hosseini and substitute Javad Kazemian gave them the three points.
“A win in the first match of any tournament is always a gift, so in that respect we have got a gift here against Uzbekistan. Having said that though, we will still have to do well in our other games,” said the 28-year-old after the game.
“The goal we conceded was a mistake by our own player, but after that error we pulled ourselves together, attacked very well and eventually won the game.
“We were very motivated to win against Uzbekistan, quite simply we came to win, that was what we thought and that was what we achieved.”
The 2004 Asian Player of the Year, who recently joined Qatar SC after two years with Bayern Munich, is not too concerned about the humid conditions in Kuala Lumpur where Iran will meet China on Sunday afternoon.
“The conditions are very similar to the one we experienced three years ago in China,” he said. “Back then we managed to acclimatize but of course there has been a big gap between then and now, so we are trying to get ourselves together.
“The conditions are the same for every team here. We just want to do our very best no matter what the weather is like and win the Asian Cup,” he concluded.