Margao: Mohammed Sharifi struck twice in final few minutes as Iran recorded a convincing 3-0 win to oust 10-man India from the AFC U-16 Football Championship, in Margao on Wednesday.
The Iran boys entered the quarter-finals from group A.
Iran controlled proceedings throughout with Mohammad Ghaderi scoring in the 23rd minute while Mohammad Sharifi was on target in the 81st and 90+1 minute.
Thus, Iran along with UAE, who both finishing with seven points each from group A, made it to the quarter-finals along with Japan, Uzbekistan and North Korea.
India along with Saudi Arabia finished the competition with a point each.
Iran played short passes amongst themselves following it up with long ball moves to keep the home team defence under constant pressure.
India defended foggedly until 23rd minute when they conceded goal through quick counter.
Midfielder Ghaderi, who kept the pressure on the home team with his constant sprints down wide left initiated the move as he played a one-two with Vahid Namdari before a rasping shot crashed onto the roof of the net.
Indian keeper Dheeraj Singh Moiranghthem had to make a save by blocking Amir Khodamoradi shot and off the rebound Reza Mousavian try hit the post and went out in the 33rd minute.
India made occassional forays and came close to scoring once but Komal Thatal shot from a Sanjeev Stalin assist went straight into the rival keeper's gloves.
Unable to create impact on the rival goal in the first half, India's coach Nicolai Adam brought in Aniket Jadhav in place of Mohamad Rakip.
But hosts received a jolt when they were reduced to 10 men after defender Boris Thangjam was sent off by referee Yaqoob Said Abdullah Abdul Baqi of Oman for a second bookable offence on rival player.
Mohammad Ghaderi had a glorious chance to double the lead but Alireza Asadabadi missed the chance.
Iran kept up the pressure to earn a couple of penalties, which Mohammed Sharifi converted to make it 3-0.