By Farrokh Hesabi

Dragan Skocic the best possible choice for Iran: Masoud Moeini

June 28, 2021 - 19:4

TEHRAN - Iranian football expert, Masoud Moeini, believes that the football federation’s decision to keep Dragan Skocic as the head coach of the Iran national team is the best decision at this time.

Skocic’s contract expired with Iran after the end of the 2022 World Cup qualification Round 2, where Iran won their four matches out of four under the tutelage of the Croat. 

After the successful run of the ‘Persian Leopards’ with Scocic, some argument was raised in Iranian sports media and among the football experts that a bigger name than the Croatian coach should sit on the bench of the Iranian national team for the next stage.

The local media reports even suggested that the Iranian federation has negotiated with some coaches, including two ex-Iran coaches Branko Ivankovic and Carlos Queiroz.

However, the Football Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran (FFIRI) announced on Monday Skocic will remain as Iran coach in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers Round 3.

“For speaking about Dragan Scocoic, we must first take it into account that he took the responsibility of Iran national team at a difficult time when the team had lost two out of their four matches in the first leg and the ex-coach Marc Wilmots had created a lot of problems for the country’s football in general and the national team in particular,” Moeini said.

“Scocic has been able to showcase the truest sense of his ability in my opinion. He was the best choice at that time after Wilmots, and now again, I believe the best decision was to continue cooperating with him.

“I know him from years ago when I was a member of Esteghlal’s board of directors, and we negotiated with him as a candidate of coaching Esteghlal at that time. He is a nice man who knows how to create a good connection with his players. In the national team, he used this strategy in the best way possible and gained the trust of the players as well as Iranian football fans,” added the former national team player.

Moeini emphasized that the next round of the World Cup qualification requires specific planning.

“In Round 3, the opponents are much stronger than the previous ones, and they will invest for their preparation. Therefore, it needs particular planning in terms of technical and mental preparation.  Now that the FFIRI has decided to cooperate with Scocic again, it should support him with the best facilities that the national team need,” he concluded.

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