90+5min: And Iran steal it at the death! Morocco made to pay for their wastefulness in front of the opposition goal with a most cruel own goal. And it’s the sub Bouhaddouz. Oops.
90+2min: Bit of handbags after a foul on Boussoufa. Spills over to the bench, too, but Herve Renard’s untucked shirt remains stylish to the max.
90min: Iran happy with a draw apparently. Morocco still trying. 6 minutes added on after the lengthy delay for N.Amrabat’s head injury.
85min: Anybody want to win this? Both teams make their final changes.
80min: Iran make a second change, Hosseini for Ebrahimi. The draw looks likely, which helps neither team. Nice save from the Iran goalkeeper at least.
76min: Amrabat the next change, forced off by what looks like a concussion after hitting his head on the ground. Amrabat comes on to replace him. Wait what? There’s two Amrabats! Also, strike El Kaabi goes off for Bouhaddouz.
65min: Last ten minutes, same as the first ten minute of the second half. Game needs a goal, or at least some substitutes. And here’s the first, Shojaei who’s on a yellow is replaced by Taremi for Iran.
55min: The lively start to the second half has petered out and we’re back to what it was late on in the first-half.
49min: Back underway and it’s Harit who misses Morocco’s latest chance.
43min: Tremendous saves by Munir to keep the game scoreless! Morocco all over the place defensively and momentum’s on Iran’s side.
37min: Morocco’s initial effort and quality has petered out, and it’s a more or less even contest at the moment, though not one of too high quality.
34min: Another Morocco turnover results in a counter, El Ahmadi takes the yellow for the team to stop it.
32min: Morocco give away a cheap free kick then make a mess of clearing it, but Cheshmi’s shot goes high.
30min: Good combination play between Ziyech, Hakimi, and Harit results in a shot for the latter but it’s saved easily.
29min: The fluidity has gone out of the game a bit, and that’s working in Iran’s favor.
26min: Belhanda’s shot absolutely levels an Iranian defender, but it’s still scoreless. Morocco with a 67-33 edge in possession, too.
20min: Iran on the counter almost create the perfect chance, but Morocco recover well to clear. The way this has gone so far, Iran has to take advantage of those opportunities to have any chance.
19min: Iran survive a massive scramble in the box. Still all Morocco, who must be wondering how they haven’t taken the lead yet.
15min: They have taken their foot off the gas a bit, but it’s still all Morocco.
12min: Iran think about coming forward, but Munir aware to the danger.
10min: Yellow card already out, Shojaei with the rough tackle and not the first of the game from Iran.
8min: El Kaabi’s shot slices wide as Morocco create another chance, this time with a long ball and a knock-down.
4min: Another chance for Morocco, Amrabat with the cross from the right, Belhanda’s tight-angle header flies high.
3min: Ziyech whiffs on a well-played corner. The Ajax star was all alone at the top of the box. Morocco keeping up the pressure.
2min: Morocco already on the front foot, a shot just wide.
KICK-OFF: And we’re off in front of a noisy and spirited crowd.
Group B begins play at the World Cup as Morocco take on Iran in a must-win game for either team if they are to have any chance of progressing from a group that also contains Spain and Portugal, who play later.
Earlier today, Uruguay beat Egypt on a late-late set piece. This one should have a few more goals as both sides should be looking to attack.
Morocco starting XI:
Munir | Hakimi, Benatia (c), Saiss, Ziyech, El Ahmadi, Belhanda, Boussoufa, Amrabat, Harit, El Kaabi
Substitutes from: rest of the squad
Iran starting XI:
Beiranvand | Hajisafi, Cheshmi, Pouraliganji, Rezaeain, Shojaei (c), Ebrahimi, Amiri, Ansarifard, Jahanbakhsh, Azmoun
Substitutes from: rest of the squad
Date / Time: Friday, June 15, 2018, 16:00 BST; 11am EDT
Venue: Zenit Arena, St. Petersburg
Referee: Cuneyt Cakir (Turkey)
On TV: ITV 1 (UK); FOX, Telemundo (USA); elsewhere
Streaming online: ITV Hub (UK); FOX Sports Go, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo; Sling World Cup (USA)
Stay tuned for updates, highlights, etc.
And be excellent to each other.