Wales v Iran


Iran have qualified for the FIFA World Cup on six occasions since their first appearance at the 1978 tournament in Argentina.

Although having never progressed from the group stage, Iran have won three matches at the World Cup beating the USA in 1998, Morocco in 2018 and Wales in 2022.

Iran are one of Asia's moist successful sides at the Asian Cup, having won the tournament on three occasions.


The Football Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran was founded in 1920 and Iran became members of FIFA in 1948 and of the AFC in 1952.

Iran's first official international match was a 0-0 draw against Afghanistan in Kabul.

Despite qualifying for the FIFA World Cup in 1978, Iran withdrew from the qualifying campaign for the 1982 FIFA World Cup because of the Iran-Iraq war and were disqualified from the 1986 qualifying campaign for refusing to play their home matches at a neutral venue.

Wales' first meeting with Iran came in 1978 where a Phil Dwyer debut goal ensured a Welsh victory. The second meeting came at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar where 10-man Wales suffered a 0-2ndefeat.

Wales record v Iran

Head to Head


no.datescorescorers (wales)venue 
34018/04/1978Iran 0-1 WalesDwyerAryamehr Stadium, TehranFr
69625/11/2022Wales 0-2 Iran Ahmad bin Ali Stadium, Al RayyanWC

Iran Honours

AFC Asian Cup winners (3): 1968, 1972, 1976

Welsh players to have made their debut against Iran

Two Welsh players have made their debut against Iran

Wales' opponents from Asian Football Confederation

Wales have faced eight countries from the current Asian Football Confederation.

Israel joined the AFC in 1954 and as such were an AFC member when they played against Wales in a 1958 FIFA World Cup play-off. However, at the Asian Games held in Iran in 1974, some Muslim and Arab countries refused to play against Israel in the football tournament. At the AFC Congress held during the games, Kuwait proposed Israel be excluded from all AFC competitions; a motion adopted by a vote of 17 to 13 with 6 abstentions.

Kuwait were Wales' next opponents from the AFC, with back to back matches played at The Racecourse, Wrexham and the Al Kuwait Sports Club Stadium, Kuwait City in 1977. Goalkeeper, Dai Davies, was unable to play in the return leg in Kuwait having been denied entry for having an Israeli stamp in his passport.

Iran, drawn in Scotland's group for the 1978 World Cup Finals in Argentina, invited Wales to Tehran as part of their tournament preparations.

With the end of the British Home Championships, the Football Association of Wales accepted lucrative offers to play Saudi Arabia in 1986 and to take part in Japan's Kirin Cup in 1992.

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