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FIFA rankings don’t matter, results do: Iran coach

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Bengaluru, Sep 7 (IANS) Iran football team head coach Carlos Queiroz has dubbed the FIFA rankings as a quantitative figure which will be of no importance once the World Cup qualifier against India kicks off at the Kanteerava Stadium here on Tuesday.

“FIFA Rankings are just another Rankings. What matters are the results,” Queiroz was quoted as saying by aiff.com on Monday.

“I have great respect for India as opponents. And I don’t see the FIFA rankings as a parameter to judge. It is 11 versus 11 on the field tomorrow. Nothing less, nothing more,” he added.

“We are playing against a difficult opponent. We need three points and so do India. It’ll be tough match for both the teams. Our opponents (India) have families, friends and fans which is the same like us. They also want to win and so do we,” Queiroz said.

Out of the 10 matches played between the two teams, Iran have registered seven wins so far while India have prevailed only twice.

“Playing away in a World Cup qualifier fixture is always difficult. There are numerous challenges and numerous difficulties. But I expect a fighting attitude from my lads,” the former Real Madrid manager said.

The Indian team are going through a poor run of form. They lost their first two matches in the World Cup qualifiers to Oman and Guam and were held to a goalless draw by Nepal in their last international friendly on August 31.

However, Queiroz, who was also a part of the coaching staff at Manchester United, asserted that the Indian team has improved in recent times and the results are not a fair reflection of their quality.

“India have improved in recent times. The score-line of the game against Oman was not a fair reflection of what happened on the pitch.

“India deserved a better result against Guam too,” Quieroz added.

Queiroz also talked about his association with former Indian captain Bhaichung Bhutia to develop football at the grassroots in India.

Bhaichung is presently the chairman of the All India Football Federation technical committee.

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